Her Last Whisper
Paranormal romantic suspense is an interesting genre, quite the combo and a top-notch mix, in Karen Robards’s new novel, HER LAST WHISPER. Once again, it is apparent that this third book in her series is another gritty literary tale --- interlacing the same montage of suspense and heart-pounding sexual tension, set amidst the paranormal --- that keeps readers on the edge of their seats. By merging two worlds so effortlessly, Robards has managed to create a story line that explodes with both passion and mystery --- the perfect formula for success. This is a tale that will haunt you, providing both thrills and chills.
Intertwining the real world with the supernatural can be risky, since audiences get bored easily when elements of believability come into play. Fortunately, this seasoned author has been able to sustain a narrative that is both saucy and thought-provoking, which does hold our attention. Yes, in this novel, all three genres complement each other, eliciting a yarn of plausible contents rich with suspense.
"By merging two worlds so effortlessly, Robards has managed to create a story line that explodes with both passion and mystery --- the perfect formula for success. This is a tale that will haunt you, providing both thrills and chills."
Dr. Charlotte (“Charlie”) Stone is a criminal psychologist who, as an expert in her field, helps the FBI capture serial killers. Along with her knowledge of these “human monsters” and a near-death experience that has left her able to communicate with dead spirits, Charlie finds herself at a crossroads. Should she continue aiding the FBI, or leave risk-taking to the law and stick to research? Well, for whatever reason, the universe won’t let her off so easily, and when she learns that another agent’s sister has fallen prey to one of these psychopaths, she knows she can’t give up on her field work just yet.
The Cinderella Killer is a danger to many young women in the City of Lights. He’s a charming predator who lures beautiful, single ladies to a deadly end. Unfortunately, FBI agent Lena Kaminsky’s sister, Giselle, is one of these women, missing after visiting with Lena in Las Vegas. So, when Lena asks Charlie for help finding her sister, Charlie can’t refuse. Commandeering the help of Special Agents Tony Bartoli and Buzz Crane --- along with her ghostly bad-boy lover, Michael Garland --- Charlie heads to Las Vegas to help with the case, never expecting to get so “up close and personal” with Tony, Michael or the serial killer.
By enlisting the help of a ghost in a story line --- who constantly second guesses the heroine’s decisions --- you have the plot for a compelling narrative, as Charlie is quick to learn. At 32 years of age, she has been in charge of her own affairs since her early teens, so she doesn’t want a man --- a ghost, or whatever --- to interfere in her life at this stage of the game. Then there is Tony --- a live temptation she wasn’t planning on, but nevertheless a diversion she doesn’t need right now --- who poses a whole other “can of worms.” Even though he is professional at work, he wants to pursue a relationship with Charlie, who isn’t ready for, or equipped to handle, a romance since she is in love with Michael. And from here the plot thickens: How can Charlie find a serial killer in the real world, while maintaining a working relationship with Tony, as she fights the supernatural to keep Michael dead/alive in her world?
HER LAST WHISPER speaks volumes in this three-fold series and definitely holds its own in discourse. I have to admit that I was a little apprehensive --- and yet my interest was piqued --- when I first encountered Michael’s supernatural persona. But this feeling was quickly dispelled as Robards’s mastery with words drew me into a narrative rich with insight and realism. Add a plot-driven theme, and you have an absolute winner of a novel.
Reviewed by Donna Smallwood on September 5, 2014