New York Times bestselling author Joan Johnston brings to life an unforgettable love story between two strong-willed people from different worlds in her thrilling new novel featuring the Blackthornes of Bitter Creek, Texas, and their formidable rivals, the Grayhawks of Wyoming.
Juggling single motherhood and her job as deputy sheriff of Teton County, Sarah Barndollar hasn't lost hope of solving two cold cases of missing young women. When a third vanishes, all hell breaks loose -- because she's the illegitimate daughter of Texas scion Clay Blackthorne and the granddaughter of his mortal enemy King Grayhawk. The crisis pits the two powerful families against each other in a race against time.
Playboy Drew DeWitt, a Blackthorne cousin, insists on taking part in the search -- putting him on a collision course with Sarah. Her cop instincts tell her the sexy Texan is trouble. But when evidence emerges of a conspiracy against the U.S. government, Sarah accepts Drew's high-powered help as she negotiates a shadowy landscape of hidden rivals and ruthless greed where every moment counts in saving lives, including her own.
At the start of Johnston's swift-moving Bitter Creek romance (The Price, etc.), 17-year-old Kate Grayhawk, the out-of-wedlock daughter of Libby Grayhawk and Clay Blackthorne, skips out of her Virginia boarding school and heads for Jackson Hole, Wyo., where her mother lives. But soon after leaving a phone message for her mother, she's drugged and kidnapped at a Teton Village bar near home. Desperate to find her daughter, Libby phones Clay, the U.S. attorney general, and is surprised when he later shows up on her doorstep. Romantic tension sizzles between the estranged lovers as they recall their long-ago affair and the decades-old animosity between their families, but they put their differences aside to join Deputy Sheriff Sarah Barndollar in the hunt for Kate, which is made perilous by threats of avalanches and impending blizzards. A precipitous secondary romance between Sarah and Drew DeWitt, Clay's cousin, is complicated by the disappearance of Sarah's husband, Tom, 15 months earlier. But as the search for Kate leads Sarah and Drew to nearby Bear Island, Sarah discovers that Kate's disappearance may be linked to Tom's "abandonment." Though some elements of the protagonists' heroic search will strain readers' belief, the story's suspense and surprising conclusion nicely counterpoint the dual romances.