Hannah is a home care nurse who took care of Donald until he died. Donald's descendants were angry that Donald left $50,000 to Hannah. They made false accusations and had her nursing license suspended. Because she can't get work, Carrick hires her thinking she will spy for him. Carrick's father ran off with a fortune a few years earlier. Carrick believes his mother knows where the money is. Carrick takes Hannah to meet his mother. When Carrick asks Hannah to spy, she adamantly refuses. The mother overhears this and likes Hannah as a result. The mother insists Hannah stay as her nurse/caretaker. Since Hannah won't spy for him, Carrick hires Gabriel, owner of a security firm, to plant video cameras throughout the house to spy on his mother and Hannah. Carrick tells Gabriel that he fears for his mother's safety because Hannah had sex with and killed Donald - a lie. As Gabriel watches the two women, he falls in love with Hannah. Someone kills the mother and frames Hannah. Hannah is now on the run. Carrick and Gabriel both want her found.
Hannah being on the run reminded me of the feelings I had when watching the movie "The Fugitive" with Harrison Ford - the odds are so against her, how can she ever come out of it? She is on the run from the government, Carrick and the private detective Gabriel who has mixed feelings. He has fallen in love with her, yet he thinks she is a murderer. This story is primarily mystery/suspense. It is well done. The characters are good. Hannah is smart and does some clever things. There is not a lot of time spent with the couple interacting with each other, which is ok. But there is some romance with a feel good ending.
REVIEWER'S COMMENTS ABOUT OTHER REVIEWS:
Thank you to other reviewers who wrote some negative comments. You made some valid points, and I'm sure there are readers who will agree with you. I wasn't bothered by those issues, so I'm going to present my opposing opinions.
One person felt there was not enough romance. I agree that there was not much romance, but there was enough to place the book within the romance genre. Readers should know that this is more about suspense than romance, but it does have the required happy ending.
One person didn't like Hannah running from her problems instead of facing them. My personal reaction (I hope) would be to fight before running, but I felt Hannah's actions were believable. The author wanted to write about Hannah being on the run, and I think she came up with a reasonable way to do it. I've read worse.
Someone did not like the hero watching Hannah (via hidden cameras) do personal things. It is not unusual (in real life or fiction) for law enforcement or private detectives to put people under surveillance. And when you're under surveillance, someone's going to see you do personal things. So, for readers who don't like their hero being a voyeur, I suggest you avoid this story. He was hired to do this, by the way. The surprise was how much he enjoyed it.
Story length: 380 pages. Swearing language: moderate. Sexual language: moderate. Number of sex scenes: 1, 8 pages long. Setting: current day New Hampshire, Maine and Texas. Copyright: 2009. Genre: romantic mystery suspense.
To date, I've read one other book by Christina Dodd. My 3 star review for "Close To You" copyright 2005 was posted 2/11/09.
I didn't buy one plot point. We know the mother was computer literate since she researched Hannah on the computer. Later, the mother asked Hannah to do something on the computer. I don't understand why the mother did not do that task herself. It was simple to do and only took a couple of minutes. In spite of this flaw, the story was still good.
I like the author's writing skills. She didn't waste time with repetition. At one point in the story, Hannah decides to tell the truth to Gabriel of everything that has happened to her. She said "I have something to tell you." The next sentence is "The next morning, ..." I liked this. The reader already knew the story, and the author didn't waste our time being repetitive. Most of the time "showing" is good, but in this case "not showing" was good.