Roanna Davenport was raised a wealthy orphan on her grandmother's magnificent Alabama estate, Davencourt, where she had a passion for horses, a genius for trouble, and a deep love for her cousin, Webb. But everyone expected Webb to marry their ravishing cousin, Jessie. When he did, Roanna's desire became no more than the stuff of dreams -- until the night Jessie was found bludgeoned to death. After the shocking murder of his wife, Webb left for Arizona, abandoning the legacy that he had once believed was all he wanted. But then an all-grown-up Roanna walked into a dingy bar in Nogales to bring him home; the mischievous sprite he had known ten years earlier was no more. Gone, too, was her fire. In its place was ice that melted at his touch. Webb is drawn back to Davencourt, to Roanna, and to the killer that once destroyed his life and waits only for the chance to finish the job....
I rated this 4 on Goodreads, but for me, it's really hovering in between 4.5 and 5. I can't give it a 5 because I don't love it as much as I love DB, but it's close.
Roanna has been in love with Webb all her life. He was her protector, from the bullies like her cousin Jessie. She was happy to look and love him on the sidelines, even when Webb & Jessie got married.
Then tragedy struck, and Webb turned his back on her, on everybody. Ten years after,her dying grandmother pleaded she went to him and bring him back.
Webb, on the other hand, was surprised to see the woman Roanna has grown out to be. Gone was the free spirited sprite who followed him everywhere. What he sees now is a woman so bottled up, she doesn't even smile, or talk much for the matter.
I love the part when Webb came back and promised himself he'll make Roanna smile again. And he counts the times that she does. Imagine his happiness when Roanna laughed for the first time in years!
Another reason I love this is I didn't guess who the actual killer was until it was revealed in the book! It didn't cross my mind who the killer would be.
And maybe, the only reason I didn't give it a 5,was because of the villain. It's not that LH failed in making the villains hateful, it's because I can't stomach them, really. I can't quite wrap my head around it, because it's so...wrong. You'll get my meaning when you read it, promise.
My fave parts:
There's this bed scene, that I find so funny, I was actually laughing when I read it:
"Are you ready?" he asked.
She didn't know what he meant. She gave him a bewildered took, and a tight smile twitched his lips.
"To make love." She looked even more confused.
"Isn't that what we're doing?" she whispered.
"Not quite. Almost."
"But you're ... inside me."
Confusion changed to alarm.
"More?" She tried to draw back from him, pressing herself into the mattress.
He grinned, though it looked as if the effort cost him.
"Not more of me. More to do."
And this part, where Roanna stood up for Webb, showing just how much she loves him:
She had endured a lot on her own account. But, by God, she wasn't going to stand there and let them slander Webb.
"You people were supposed to have been Webb's friends," she said in a clear, strong voice. She had seldom in her life been angrier, except at Jessie, but this was a different kind of anger. She felt cool, perfectly in control of herself.
"You should have known ten years ago that he would never have harmed Jessie, you should have supported him instead of putting your heads
together and whispering about him. Not one of you-not one-expressed any sympathy to him at Jessie's funeral. Not one of you spoke up in his
behalf. But you've come to his house tonight as guests, you've eaten his food, you've danced ... and you're still talking about him."
She paused, looking from face to face, then continued.
"Perhaps I should make my family's position clear to everyone, in case there's been any misunderstanding. We support Webb. Full stop, period. If
anyone of you here feels you can't associate with him, then please leave now, and your association with the Davenports and the Tallants will be at an end."
The silence on the patio was thick, embarrassed. No one moved.
AND THE ending, I so love its poignancy:
Their fingers twined together, and he lost himself in her whiskey-colored eyes as the words began, washing over them in the soft purple twilight:
"Dearly beloved, we are gathered here together ..
A MUST READ! - MA