Review of BLACKOUT by Annie Solomon (see her website)
Warner Books, April 2006
Margo Scott believes she is an unassuming dealer of rare books until one day when she discovers she's lost an entire month of her life. As she attempts to find out what happened during that month, she soon discovers a number of disturbing things. The family in her memories doesn't exist. Her home is riddled with video cameras. She has a secret apartment, a cache of passports in various names, and a collection of very sharp knives.
When the police come calling, accusing her of murdering a man she never heard of, she knows she has to get to the bottom of the mystery or end up in jail for the rest of her life. Or dead, since a gaggle of very scary men are trying to kill her.
Enter Jake Wise, a government agent whose mentor asked him to "keep an eye" on Margo. When that mentor is murdered and Margo becomes a suspect, he is just as determined to find out what is going on.
The pace of this book is non-stop, no breathing room. Lots of action, lots of violence--including violence between hero and heroine, which was a little disturbing but well motivated--and an intriguing mystery that the reader can guess parts of, though there are plenty of twists and surprises, too. Margo is a tough cookie, and watching her take control of her situation and gradually master it--even as she begins to suspect she has committed unspeakable acts--is riveting.
This book won the Romance Writers of America Rita award for best romantic suspense novel, and it's easy to see why.
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