A Virginia attorney’s deadly past returns with a travelling carnival in this thriller that “will have readers sleeping with the lights on” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).
In death, they are purified. Holding his victims under water, he washes away their sins as they struggle for their last breath. Then he exposes them for what they really are: witches, sent to tempt and to corrupt…
Virginia defense attorney Charlotte Wellington doesn’t talk about her childhood—not how she was put to work as a carnival fortuneteller, or her sister’s brutal murder. But now the carnival she escaped all those years ago has come to town. For Charlotte, what’s past is past. But others don’t agree. And as a serial killer terrorizes the area, Charlotte and Detective Daniel Rokov are drawn into a case that becomes terrifyingly personal.
The killer has waited many years for Charlotte to be within his reach. All his victims deserve their fate, but her guilt is greatest. And he is determined to make her suffer and repent—before she dies.
Burton's latest romantic suspense will have readers sleeping with the lights on. Charlotte Wellington escaped her life as a carnival fortune-teller at age 16, after her sister's murder. She also left behind her infant niece, Sooner. Now, 18 years later, Charlotte has become an ice-veneered defense attorney in Alexandria, Va. Her secret background catches up with her when her stepfather pulls his carnival into Alexandria, and Sooner is the new Madame Divine. Meanwhile, Det. Daniel Rokov, Charlotte's strictly sex-only-no-commitment lover, is working on the murder case of a woman staked in an abandoned building, "witch" crudely tattooed on her forehead. When a second ritualistic murder occurs, Charlotte worries that Sooner could be next. The terrifying viewpoint of the killer, who tortures his victims and has reserved stakes for Charlotte and Sooner, adds tension to this well-paced thriller with a gloss of romance.