Kay Hooper's new thriller, "Chill of Fear," is a mystery with a paranormal twist. The book is set in Leisure, Tennessee, at a secluded resort called "The Lodge." This location has been the scene of numerous murders and disappearances over the years. One crime in particular has obsessed Quentin Hayes, a psychic and a member of the FBI's Special Crimes Unit, whose members use their extrasensory abilities as investigative tools. Hayes has spent a great deal of time over the years trying to find the killer of an eight-year-old girl named Missy; Quentin was a guest at the resort when Missy was murdered, twenty-five years ago.
Diana Brisco has recently arrived at the Lodge. She is a troubled thirty-three year old woman who had been taking a variety of sedatives, antianxiety drugs, and antidepressants for over twenty years. Her mother died when Diana was a young girl, and her father was alarmed by Diana's strange behavior, her blackouts, and her inability to concentrate. However, Diana's doctor weaned her off all drugs a year ago, and after meeting with and talking to Quentin, Diana realizes that she has never been mentally ill. She is a medium who can see and talk to the dead. Fate brought her to the Lodge at the same time as Quentin because she is the only one who can speak for those who have already passed over to "the other side." With Quentin's help, Diana may be able to stop a vicious murderer from claiming any more victims.
Hooper's simple and straightforward writing style contrasts nicely with the bizarre occurrences that gradually unfold throughout the book. The author makes her fanciful plot work by underplaying the melodrama and presenting far out events in a matter-of-fact way. She uses flashbacks and foreshadowing liberally to hint at the dangerous being that inhabits the Lodge, and she includes a number of red herrings to keep the reader in suspense. Diana is a sympathetic character and her relationship with Quentin develops gradually and realistically. The book's ending is both spooky and satisfying. "Chill of Fear" is an engrossing novel that will hook readers who enjoy an unusual story and a good scare.