Review

Wicked Game

by Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush

Even at the age of 16, Jezebel Brentwood, otherwise known as
Jessie, was a force to be reckoned with. Mysterious, sexy,
precocious and at the same time mocking, she worked her magic on
the boys in her crowd at St. Elizabeth's, a private Catholic high
school. Not always liked due to a mean streak, she was certainly
always desired.

When she went missing, no one knew whether she had run away or
met with foul play. Her friends, the popular kids at school, fell
under suspicion, but with no body and no real clues, Jessie's
disappearance quickly became a cold case.

Twenty years after the original event, St. Elizabeth's is being
razed, and the demolition has revealed an ugly secret --- a set of
bones belonging to a young female. Could it be that Jessie was
never far from home after all?

When Jessie disappeared, Detective Sam McNally was sure that one
of the "Preppy Pricks" --- as he liked to refer to the privileged
boys she had been friends with --- was the culprit. Unable to prove
it, though, he has stewed over the disappearance of this
fascinating young woman ever since. But when the bones are
discovered, he's hot on the trail again, firmly convinced that they
belong to Jessie Brentwood.

Becca Sutcliff, who was a year behind Jessie at school and crazy
wild over Jessie's high school boyfriend, Hudson Walker, is shaken
to the core when she hears about the recovery of the bones at St.
Elizabeth's. The past comes rushing back to haunt her with a
vengeance.

When Becca was younger, she had visions, a dubious gift at best.
They left her feeling self-conscious and freakish as well as taking
their toll on her physically and mentally. Luckily she hasn't had
one in years --- that is, until those bones are discovered. Now the
visions are back, leaving Becca to feel scared, shaken and
unsteady.

Becca hasn't exactly been the poster child for the emotionally
well-adjusted these days anyway. Her husband, Ben, recently left
her for a 22-year-old. To add insult to injury, he quickly
impregnated his lover, while throughout his marriage to Becca, he
had denied her the very thing she wanted most: children. Fate has a
way of intervening, though, and Ben dropped dead of a heart attack
before the divorce was final, leaving Becca to cope not only with
her husband's betrayal but also with his death.

When the bones are unearthed at St. Elizabeth's, suddenly the
old crowd comes in contact with each other and the adults they are
now must somehow come to grips with the kids they were then. The
renewed contact is especially difficult for Becca. On top of
dealing with her feelings concerning Jessie's disappearance, she
must now face her feelings for Jessie's ex, Hudson Walker. Hudson
was Becca's first love and broke her heart.

Everyone wants to figure out what happened to Jessie all those
years ago, but everyone also has secrets they'd rather keep to
themselves. When the students who were the best and brightest at
St. Elizabeth's start dropping like flies, it's time to get to the
bottom of matters quickly. There’s someone out there who
wishes them ill, and he or she will stop at nothing to see them
punished.

Bestselling authors (and sisters) Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush
team up for the first time to produce this excellent read and a
definite page-turner. Often it can be hard to keep track of a large
cast of characters in a suspense novel, but each of them here is so
distinct and so well-written that there is no confusion as to
who’s who. I didn't have to read long until I was sucked into
the drama of the missing girl, the lives and personalities of the
kids, and the group dynamics that were at work when they met as
adults.

Reviewed by Amie Taylor on January 24, 2011

Wicked Game
by Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush

  • Publication Date: February 1, 2009
  • Genres: Fiction, Romantic Suspense
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Zebra Books (Mass Market)
  • ISBN-10: 1420103385
  • ISBN-13: 9781420103380