, Theo Buchanan, the brother of FBI agent Nick Buchanan from Heartbreaker
, Garwood's first foray into suspense fiction, meets surgeon Dr Michelle "Mike" Renard when he throws up on her designer dress at a New Orleans gala. Dr Mike saves Theo's life with an emergency appendectomy, enabling him to return to Boston and his job as a federal prosecutor.
But Theo can't stop thinking about Mike and her little hometown on the bayou. After concluding an investigation and trial that brings down a powerful organised crime syndicate, Theo receives several death threats and his boss recommends he keep a low profile. What better place to go incognito than Bowen, Louisiana, where the catfish practically throw themselves at your fishing pole and where a certain pretty young doctor is opening her new practice? But when Theo arrives, he finds life in Bowen isn't quite as idyllic as he thought. Someone has ransacked Mike's new offices and seems dead-set on harming her. As Theo struggles to protect Mike, he uncovers a ring of upper-crust criminals willing to do anything, even murder to keep their dirty little secret--all $40 million of it--from being discovered. What connection could they possibly have to Mike? And why does everyone under the age of 18 keep calling Theo "Coach"? Join perennial favourite Garwood on a journey into the quirky close-knit communities of the Louisiana bayou and the journey a man and woman devoted to their careers undertake as they fall passionately in love.
With Mercy and Heartbreaker, bestselling author Julie Garwood shows she has a new calling--contemporary romantic suspense fiction. While long-time fans of Garwood hope she won't forsake the historical romance genre that has been so successful for her, this versatile author is coming into her own as a creator of amazingly complex and detailed suspense novels. --Alison Trinkle, Amazon.com
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From Publishers Weekly
After last year's bestselling Heartbreaker, her first venture into contemporary romantic suspense, Garwood turns out another of the same genre with equally crowd-pleasing results. Set alternately in posh New Orleans and in a swampy Louisiana bayou, the novel begins with the mercy killing of sickly, bedridden Catherine Bodine, wife of affluent attorney John Russell. John is the 30-something leader of what he and his three friends call the Sowing Club, their own high stakes embezzlement group, a secret society bound by a pact that will guarantee them millions in cash by the time they are 40. A shift to the romantic plot line introduces Department of Justice lawyer Theo Buchanan, doubled over in pain at an awards ceremony in New Orleans. Brilliant and striking surgeon Michelle Renard comes to Theo's rescue, performing an appendectomy, capturing his heart and leaving before Theo can thank her. Determined to show his gratitude, Theo follows the beautiful doctor to the backwater town of Bowen, La. Upon arrival, he finds Michelle distraught because she's being followed, her house has been broken into and her clinic ransacked. Theo hangs around to investigate and gets to know a slew of colorful country folk determined to feed him gumbo, cull free legal advice and make him the new high school football coach. Sparks fly furiously between Theo and Michelle, but bullets fly, too, when it becomes clear that Michelle is the one person who can hinder the Sowing Club's greedy ambitions. Garwood serves up a well-paced and absorbing read sure to satisfy readers who seek a bit of danger in love. Doubleday Book Club and Rhapsody Book Club main selection. (Sept.)Forecast: This strong offering will hit bestseller lists hard and early and deservedly so.
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