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Keeper of the Bride

Keeper of the Bride

3.8 39
by Tess Gerritsen

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Had she survived because of fate, coincidence or just luck?

If Nina Cormier's wedding had taken place, she would be dead. But after the bride was left at the altar, the church stood empty when the bomb went off. It wasn't until a stranger tried to run her car off the road, however, that she realized someone wanted her dead.

But who?


Had she survived because of fate, coincidence or just luck?

If Nina Cormier's wedding had taken place, she would be dead. But after the bride was left at the altar, the church stood empty when the bomb went off. It wasn't until a stranger tried to run her car off the road, however, that she realized someone wanted her dead.

But who?That's what Detective Sam Navarro needs to find out . . . fast. As a cop, he knows better than to become attached to the woman he's trying to protect. But as a man . . .

With a nightmare unfolding around them, Sam and Nina decipher the stunning truth. Now they're at the mercy of a brilliant madman who plays for keeps . . .

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Tess Gerritsen is an automatic must-read in my house." -Stephen King

"Tess Gerritsen...throws one twist after another until the excitement is almost unbearable." -San Jose Mercury News

"Ms. Gerritsen is a master!" -RT Book Reviews

"Gerritsen's romances are thrillers from beginning to end." -Portland Press Herald

"Tess Gerritsen brings us action, adventure and compelling romance." -RT Book Reviews

"Riveting... Gerritsen knows how to fashion credible, dimensional characters."-Los Angeles Times

"Tess Gerritsen writes some of the smartest, most compelling thrillers around." -Bookreporter

"Gerritsen is tops in her genre." –USA TODAY

San Jose Mercury News
Tess Gerritsen . . . throws one twist after another until the excitement is almost unbearable.
"This fast-paced story, boasts some nice plot twists and two likable protagonists. Sandra Brown readers will love it.”
Library Journal
An ER nurse finds herself the target of a lethal bomber and is drawn to the detective on the case in this tantalizing, well-plotted story that keeps readers on edge as the puzzle pieces gradually fall into place. First published as a Harlequin Intrigue in 1996, this early Gerritsen foreshadows her later medical suspense thrillers.

Product Details

Publication date:
Her Protector Series
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 0.90(d)

Read an Excerpt

The wedding was off. Cancelled. Canned. Kaput.

Nina Cormier sat staring at herself in the church dressing room mirror and wondered why she couldn't seem to cry. She knew the pain was there, deep and terrible beneath the numbness, but she didn't feel it. Not yet. She could only sit dry-eyed, staring at her reflection. The picture-perfect image of a bride. Her veil floated in gossamer wisps about her face. The bodice of her ivory satin dress, embroidered with seed pearls, hung fetchingly off-shoulder. Her long black hair was gathered into a soft chignon. Everyone who'd seen her that morning in the dressing room—her mother, her sister Wendy, her stepmother Daniella—had declared her a beautiful bride.

And she would have been. Had the groom bothered to show up.

He didn't even have the courage to break the news to her in person. After six months of planning and dreaming, she'd received his note just twenty minutes before the ceremony. Via the best man, no less.

Nina, I need time to think about this. I'm sorry, I really am. I'm leaving town for a few days. I'll call you.

She forced herself to read the note again.

I need time…. I need time….

How much time does a man need? she wondered.

A year ago, she'd moved in with Dr. Robert Bledsoe. It's the only way to know if we 're compatible, he'd told her. Marriage was such a major commitment, a permanent commitment, and he didn't want to make a mistake. At forty-one, Robert had known his share of disastrous relationships. He was determined not to make any more mistakes. He wanted to be sure that Nina was the one he'd been waiting for all his life.

She'd been certain Robert was the man she'd been waiting for. So certain that, on the very day he'd suggested they live together, she'd gone straight home and packed her bags….

"Nina? Nina, open the door!" It was her sister Wendy, rattling the knob. "Please let me in."

Nina dropped her head in her hands. "I don't want to see anyone right now."

"You need to be with someone."

"I just want to be alone."

"Look, the guests have all gone home. The church is empty. It's just me out here."

"I don't want to talk to anyone. Just go home, will you? Please, just go."

There was a long silence outside the door. Then Wendy said, "If I leave now, how're you going to get home? You'll need a ride."

"Then I'll call a cab. Or Reverend Sullivan can drive me. I need some time to think."

"You're sure you don't want to talk?"

"I'm sure. I'll call you later, okay?"

"If that's what you really want." Wendy paused, then added, with a note of venom that penetrated even through the oak door, "Robert's a jerk, you know. I might as well tell you. I've always thought he was."

Nina didn't answer. She sat at the dressing table, her head in her hands, wanting to cry, but unable to squeeze out a single tear. She heard Wendy's footsteps fade away, then heard only the silence of the empty church. Still no tears would come. She couldn't think about Robert right now. Instead, her mind seemed to focus stubbornly on the practical aspects of a cancelled wedding. The catered reception and all that uneaten food. The gifts she had to return. The nonrefundable airline tickets to St. John Island. Maybe she should go on that honeymoon anyway and forget Dr. Robert Bledsoe. She'd go by herself, just her and her bikini. Out of this whole heartbreaking affair, at least she'd come out with a tan.

Slowly she raised her head and once again looked at her reflection in the mirror. Not such a beautiful bride after all, she thought. Her lipstick was smeared and her chignon was coming apart. She was turning into a wreck.

With sudden rage she reached up and yanked off the veil. Hairpins flew in every direction, releasing a rebellious tumble of black hair. To hell with the veil; she tossed it in the trash can. She snatched up her bouquet of white lilies and pink sweetheart roses and slam-dunked it into the trash can as well. That felt good. Her anger was like some new and potent fuel flooding her veins. It propelled her to her feet.

She walked out of the church dressing room, the train of her gown dragging behind her, and entered the nave.

The pews were deserted. Garlands of white carnations draped the aisles, and the altar was adorned with airy sprays of pink roses and baby's breath. The stage had been beautifully set for a wedding that would never take place. But the lovely results of the florist's hard work was scarcely noticed by Nina as she strode past the altar and started up the aisle. Her attention was focused straight ahead on the front door. On escape. Even the concerned voice of Reverend Sullivan calling to her didn't slow her down. She walked past all the floral reminders of the day's fiasco and pushed through the double doors.

There, on the church steps, she halted. The July sunshine glared in her eyes, and she was suddenly, painfully aware of how conspicuous she must be, a lone woman in a wedding gown, trying to wave down a taxi. Only then, as she stood trapped in the brightness of afternoon, did she feel the first sting of tears.

Meet the Author

Sunday Times bestselling author Tess Gerritsen is one of the biggest names in crime fiction. A former doctor, Tess has now retired from medicine to write full-time. She and her family live in Maine.

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Keeper of the Bride 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 39 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Keeper of the Bride is the 12th stand-alone novel by best-selling American author, Tess Gerritsen, and is the 2nd book of the Her Protector series. When her fiancé leaves her stranded at the altar, Nina Cormier is sure things can’t get any worse. Then the church explodes and she faces hours of questioning before a stiff, unfeeling automaton from the Portland Bomb Task Force, Sam Navarro, subjects her to more of the same. As Sam tries to determine for whom the bomb was meant, Nina is almost run off the road by another car. Before long Sam has a list of facts to churn over: a cancelled wedding, an attempted murder, a missing Church janitor and a bomb. And he finds himself attracted to the bride, a woman he is charged with protecting from harm. Even if the hero is a bit slow figuring out why his charge has been targeted, this is still a good example of Gerritsen’s early forte, romance/intrigue. The plot is original and has a few twists; the characters have a bit of depth and charm; and, while the use of car phones does rather date the story, the climax is dramatic. Good Gerristen reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is captivating from the beginning. Well written.
pamijoPS More than 1 year ago
This really is a good read. Action from the start to finish!
Anonymous 3 days ago
The story and suspense were good but the back and forth doubts of their feelings for each other was a little tiresome
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well done.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
typical love story
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you enjoy the "I'm a gorgeous damsel in a tough situation who can prove she's strong to her new hunky hero" genre, this is a book for you. If you enjoy the "Rizzolli and Isles" style of Tess Gerritsen writing, this book will disappoint.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
kath3k More than 1 year ago
A good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am normally not a harlequin romance kinda reader BUT mix in some murder and bombings and it just became my kind of book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this book and story line. First book I've readb by this writer.
MA76 More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. It didn't quite come up with her breathtaking plots of her other books. It seemed more like a romance novel. But it read fast and kept my attention.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a boring romance
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book kept my attention all the way to the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As all of Tess' books, this one does not disappoint. She is one of my favorite authors. This is a great mixture of mystery and romance. I like the fact that her books are not the same story lines. She really knows how to entertain!!
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