It's fun to be surprised by a book. I grabbed Masquerade off Mt. Bookpile knowing that I like Janet Dailey's writing. But I hadn't read her work in a while and was expecting an average romantic suspense that would be enjoyable but not necessarily anything special. Instead, I found myself hypnotized by the story and staying up late last night to finish it. (Fortunately it was only 11:30, not 3 AM like my daughter reading Twilight last week.)
Remy Jardin wakes up in a hospital in Nice, France, with no memory of who she is or where she is from. Witnesses had seen a man hit her on the roadside during the Carnival festival, then disappear into the crowds. She hit her head when she fell. The brain trauma has caused her amnesia.
A few days later her photo is in the newspapers. Her family in New Orleans sees it and comes for her. Her family are the wealthy gentry of the city, the fortune from Crescent Line shipping having been in the family since before the Civil War. Cole Buchanan, the CEO of Crescent Line, picks her up from the hospital. She realizes Cole means more to her than as of the CEO of the family business. Her brother joins them a few hours later and they all return to New Orleans.
Remy starts having some memory flashes, but nothing that lead up to her attack in Nice. She quickly picks up on the tension between Cole and her family. Something is going on that she can't remember. She is torn between Cole and family loyalties. Then she is approached by an insurance claims agent. He accuses Crescent Line of perpetuating a fraud when one of their ships sunk in the Gulf of Mexico a year earlier. Remy can't believe it.
Janet Dailey has written a suspenseful romance novel set both in the present with a secondary romance set in the 1850's. I had a glimmer of the solution, but not the whole of it. Remy is a well rounded figure who makes no apology for the way she was lucky enough to be raised in wealth. Yet she is grounded and able to be a sympathetic character.
Masquerade is a good romantic suspense. Enjoy!
Notice: Non-graphic violence, Strong sexual content
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