Readers who prefer their romance novels to have a heavy dose of friendship will be particularly delighted by Crash and Burn, the latest book in Fern Michaels’ Sisterhood series. It’s clear that the leading ladies in Michaels’ book are exceptionally close and have no problem speaking their minds in front of each other and being honest—and it’s quite refreshing.
The series, which started in 2003, centers around a group of women who have faced major issues in the “justice” system and are now doing what they can to make sure others do not share the same fate. Michaels fans who have been with the series since the beginning will no doubt be up to date on the characters and their backstories. As for readers who are new to the series, they might feel a little behind in the beginning, as the large caste of characters is enough to make an initiate’s head swim. That said, it’s not enough to keep you away. The women are an interesting and diverse group, including when it comes to age. Indeed, it’s quite fun to read about female friendships that cross generations.
One of the major characters in this installment is Nikki Quinn. She’s a married lawyer with her own law firm, one that gets a major new client. That client is Livinia Lambert, wife of the Speaker of the House, Wilson “Buzz” Lambert. After many years of emotional suffering, Livinia wants out, and she can only trust the job to Quinn’s respected firm, which is staffed by some of the toughest lawyers in the Washington, D.C. area. (Oh, and they’re all ladies, which makes it all the more fun.) Livinia has everything already planned out for the most part, and she just needs help executing her plan. Nikki and her team gear up to do just that.
In order to bring Livinia justice, Quinn and her circle must do battle with a major enemy, a group of male lawyers with their own firm who are known as the Chessmen. To say that they are not exactly ethical would be a gross understatement. They are mean and sleazy and unapologetic about it. Fortunately, Quinn and her circle are no shrinking violets. They’ve seen the worst and have come out stronger for it. Nothing—and no one—scares them. At least, not anymore.
As the women comb through the various issues tied to Livinia’s case—due to her husband’s position, Livinia feels the need to make sure her husband is served in a timely and hush-hush manner, which doesn’t make things easy for the women trying to help her—their efforts begin to lead them back to a horrifying ordeal that took place decades before. As Nikki and her circle peel back the layers of their current case, and things begin to come full circle, everyone needs to stay on their toes if justice will be done.
Friendships and legalese aside, there are plenty of lighthearted moments sprinkled throughout the book. Reading about Nikki and her husband, Jack Emery, is fun. Their scenes together are a treat. There’s a long-running gag of the simmering passions between a journalist, Maggie Spritzer, and the man who is gaga for her, Ted Robinson. There are also plenty of humorous bits—many of them at the Chessmen’s expense.
In short, Michaels’ latest is a satisfying read that will please both new readers and those who are already familiar with the series. Faithful readers who have kept up with this long-running series will delight in being reunited with beloved characters, and new readers will have fun getting to know them.
Crash and Burn is on B&N bookshelves now.