Megan Blair is a physician who has lived with her Uncle Phillip
ever since her mother's death when Megan was 15. Her life is
comfortable and steady, until the night someone in a truck rams her
car repeatedly until she is run off the road. Phillip contacts a
government agent named Neal Grady to tell him of the attempt on
Grady enters Megan's life --- or, rather, he re-enters it, since he
had spent time with Megan and her mother the summer Megan's mother
died. Grady watches Megan at the zoo as she spends time with the
young son of a friend. Suddenly she hears voices screaming in
agony. Pleading illness, she goes home to nap.
Grady must now tell Megan the truth about her life. He appears in
her home, talking the protective Phillip into letting him speak
with her. He explains to Megan that her mother was a "Pandora," a
person with incredible psychic abilities, and that Grady himself
has some extrasensory gifts. He reveals to Megan that the voices
she heard at the zoo, and that she remembers hearing when she was
young, means that she is a "Listener," who can tune into echoes in
any place or situation where something terrible has happened.
Megan learns for the first time that her "Uncle" Phillip is not her
relative. Grady hired Phillip to watch over her and keep her safe.
She is also informed that her mother did not die in an accident.
Instead, she was murdered by a man named Molino. Molino believes
that Megan's mother killed his son, Stephen, who brutally raped
her. As a Pandora, Megan's mother was able to trigger psychic
abilities in other people. Although this was sometimes beneficial
to the recipient, Stephen had gone mad and killed himself. Molino's
bloodthirsty revenge knows no time limits; he has finally tracked
Megan down and plans to kill her.
Molino's hit man makes another attempt to kill Megan, but shoots
Phillip, who ends up in a coma. Megan, with Grady's help, settles
Phillip into a medical facility with a fine coma specialist. As
Grady comforts her, memories of the summer when she was 15 and had
a crush on him flood her. Little does she know that Grady is also
revisiting that summer, when he constantly fought his strong
attraction to the beautiful young teen.
In the meantime, Grady needs Megan and her gifts to find a ledger
that tracks the whereabouts of a family with powerful psychic
abilities, a family that may be related to Megan. The history of
the Ledger goes back to the time of the Inquisition. Who has
The first step in their search is a trip to Paris so Megan can
listen to the echoes of a circus performer who killed himself after
Molino attempted to torture information about the Ledger from him.
The echoes are a torment for Megan to listen to, but she gleans a
clue. However, Molino is on their trail in a deadly cat-and-mouse
game across Europe. He wants the Ledger in order to target and kill
all the psychics, beginning with Megan --- and he will stop at
nothing in order to attain his goal.
Iris Johansen delivers some interesting plot twists and ideas, and
she keeps the surprises coming until the very last page. Readers
may wish that the protagonists were more fleshed out, particularly
Megan, Grady and Molino (secondary characters Harley and Renata are
a bit more interesting). Although the plot loses momentum
occasionally during lengthy dialogue and romantic scenes, fans of
romantic suspense should find PANDORA'S DAUGHTER to be a highly
Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon (email@example.com) on January 14, 2011