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Where the Road Ends

Where the Road Ends

3.3 4
by Tara Taylor Quinn

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There are some things only a mother can feel…

At one time, Amy Wainscoat had it all—wealth, control of her family's Chicago business, a handsome and loving husband, a child she adored. But her husband was killed in a boating accident a year ago. And now, most devastating of all, five-year-old Charles has been kidnapped, apparently


There are some things only a mother can feel…

At one time, Amy Wainscoat had it all—wealth, control of her family's Chicago business, a handsome and loving husband, a child she adored. But her husband was killed in a boating accident a year ago. And now, most devastating of all, five-year-old Charles has been kidnapped, apparently by the nanny she'd recently fired.

Despite the involvement of the police and the FBI, despite the fact that she's hired one of the best private investigators around, Amy's determined to be part of the search.

There are some things only a mother can do…

When Charles and his ex-nanny are spotted in Michigan, Amy drives across the state, following every conceivable lead, following each road to its end. As she and her detective grow close, their shared quest engenders an intimacy that's more real than anything except her love for Charles.

Then, one day, the search is over. And what they find shocks Amy as nothing has ever shocked her before.

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Where The Roads Ends

By Tara Taylor Quinn

Harlequin Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 2003 Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. All right reserved. ISBN: 1-55166-706-1

Chapter One

She was going to have to let the nanny go.

Staring out the front-room window, taking in the beautiful rolling grounds of the Wainscoat
estate, Amelia reined in emotion, trading its insidious confusion for logical thought.

Would it always feel as if her life was out of control?

Or was letting Kathy go the first step toward taking charge? The beginning of a new existence
for herself and her son?

Fingers trembling uncharacteristically, Amelia pushed her dark hair over her shoulders, ruining
the effect Donald, her hairdresser of ten years, had so painstakingly created. And if the tears
that were threatening actually fell, the time she'd spent on her artfully applied makeup would be
wasted, too.

As she stood there in her slim-fitting, dove-gray designer suit waiting for Kathy to appear,
Amelia tried to focus on the facts. And she remembered the last conversation - almost a year
earlier - she'd had with her husband.

They'd been in her suite in the high-rise building that was home to the head office of Wainscoat
Construction. After a short day at his current construction site, Johnny had come to drop off
Charles before going to the dock to take the new boat for a trial run, prior to teaching Charles
to water ski the followingday.

"I'm a little uncomfortable with how possessive of Charles Kathy's getting," he'd said slowly.
"It's almost like she's jealous of your place in his life."

"I've had to remind her once or twice that as his mother, I make the decisions," she replied.
"Kathy's very involved with him, but that's natural, don't you think? They spend a lot of time

He'd nodded, but hadn't looked convinced.

"Do you think there's a problem?" she'd asked Johnny. "More than just two women being
territorial?" She'd studied his face, usually able to read his thoughts.

His broad shoulders square, Johnny had shrugged. "I think it's possible. Which is why I wanted
to talk to you."

Amelia's stomach had started to hurt then - just as it hurt now. "So what do we do about her?
It's not like we can fire her, Johnny. She's part of the family."

"Well -" Johnny had drawn out the word meaningfully " - no, she's not."

"She's been living with us since Charles was born."

"She's an employee."

He'd been right, of course, but ...

"One we've trusted with our son's life," Amelia said.

"And I think we still can, to a point."

"To what point?"

Johnny's eyes had been warm, concerned, as they met hers. He'd suggested they keep an eye
on things. Listen carefully to everything their four-year-old son had to say.

And with that warning, she'd wanted to get rid of Kathy then and there.

"Don't overreact, Amelia," Johnny had said.

Her heart missed a beat now as she remembered the grin he'd given her. The one that had
always melted her heart.

"I'm not suggesting anything drastic here," he'd continued. "I don't think it's gotten out of

She remembered thinking, that Johnny was right. As usual.

Things hadn't been bad enough to warrant firing Kathy. Not then.

But this past year, since Johnny's death, the situation had changed.

At least Amelia thought it had.

Thinking back over the past months, she made a mental list of times she'd been concerned
about Kathy's actions and was surprised - and a little frightened - by how extensive the list
had grown.

Most recently with Kathy's insistence that Amelia not change the school her son was attending.

Johnny had been worried that Kathy was over-stepping her boundaries.

And she had been; there was no longer any doubt of it. Amelia reviewed her list.

And then her mind switched back to Johnny that day in her office. Bruising her with memories of
the husband she'd lost ...

He'd reached for the door.



She hadn't known why she'd called out to him. She'd just wished things had been different, that
he'd kissed her while they'd had that moment alone. That she'd said, "I love you."

"You'll be home for dinner?" she'd asked.

"I always am," he'd said, heading back to the outer office.

He was always home for dinner. It was she - CEO of the multibillion dollar company for
which Johnny was a construction worker - who missed out on family dinners. But what else
could she do?

She'd met Johnny on a job site. He was a master carpenter and project supervisor for
Wainscoat Construction. She'd known there would be some challenges in their relationship, but
they'd loved each other passionately and she'd been certain that would be enough. She'd had no
way of knowing, when she'd married Johnny and had Charles so soon afterward, that her father
would die suddenly. Hadn't realized that while Johnny's pride demanded he continue to work,
he had no intention of stepping into her father's shoes, of working a desk job. Ever.


She'd jumped, hitting her elbow on the doorjamb. Johnny had come back.


"Just wanted to make sure you'd be home for dinner."

"Yeah," she'd said softly, very glad he'd asked.


He'd kissed her then, deeply, intimately, exploring her mouth with his tongue in ways that left her
feeling, as his touch always did, more like a giddy teenager than the boss of an internationally
known company.

It had been the last time she'd ever felt his lips on hers.

Kathy's voice interrupted Amelia's memories. "This might have to wait until tonight, I really can't
talk long." Kathy had come into the room so quietly Amelia hadn't realized she was there.
"Charles's swimming lesson starts in half an hour and I like to let him warm up first."

Kathy's once-forthright gaze was elusive. And Amelia's resolve, along with her stomachache,


Excerpted from Where The Roads Ends by Tara Taylor Quinn
Copyright © 2003 by Harlequin Enterprises Ltd.
Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Meet the Author

A USA Today Bestselling author of 80 novels, in twenty languages, Tara Taylor Quinn has sold more than seven million copies. Known for her intense emotional fiction, Ms. Quinn is a five time finalist for the RWA Rita Award and has appeared often on local and national TV including CBS Sunday Morning.

For ttq offers, news, and contests, visit http://www.tarataylorquinn.com/recipe.html!

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Where the Road Ends 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
cloggiedownunder More than 1 year ago
Where The Road Ends is the seventh stand-alone novel by American author, Tara Taylor Quinn. After her father died, Amelia Wainscoat took over the running of his enormously successful construction business; her husband, Johnny, continued in his job as a construction worker, while nanny, Kathy Stead looked after little Charlie. But then Johnny died in a boating accident, and Amelia relied even more on Kathy. A year on, she could see that Kathy’s relationship with Charlie was becoming unnatural: Kathy had to go. Barely a week later, every mother’s worst nightmare: Charlie disappeared from a ride at a funfair, and Amelia immediately suspected Kathy. When authorities exonerated the ex-nanny, Amelia took matters into her own hands. She may have hired ex-FBI agent, Brad Dorchester to find Charlie, but that wasn’t going to stop her from looking for him herself, even if that meant taking on an alias, living in cheap accommodation and taking menial jobs. Amy Wayne would stop at nothing in her search for her son. This is a gripping tale, although it does, perhaps, drag a little in the middle. Quinn’s purpose may be to give the reader a sense of Amy’s weariness after months of searching. The romance between Brad and Amy hinted at in the blurb is very much in the background, especially when Amy falls into bed another man. And while the climax is quite dramatic, the astute reader will be able to predict from the back cover blurb and the first chapter or two just what the shocking revelation at the end will be. Just a bit slow. 3.5 stars
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had great hopes for this book, but just a few pages in I knew how it would end. It was boring, just the same old 'looking for my son in another Michigan small town' theme over and over. Three-quarters of the way through I finally just skipped to the end to verify that yes, I had figured out the ending way back at the beginning. Not a particularly inspired or creative work of fiction. I won't be wasting my time on this author again.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In Chicago Heights, Johnny Dunn dies in a boating accident. A year later his grieving widow Amy Wainscott, CEO of a construction company, decides to spend more time with her five-year-old son Charles. She fires Charles¿ nanny, Kathy Stead, who frightens her with her obsessive behavior towards her son. A few weeks later, someone abducts Charles from an amusement park.

Amy hires Denver based private detective Brad Dorchester to find her son, who she feels his former nanny kidnapped. However, Amy also works the field seeking anyone who looks like Kathy. Using the name Amy Wayne in Lawrence, Michigan, she feels she is closing in on Kathy and consequently Charles. As she nears her target, Amy worries whether her boy will remember her and even if he does will he feel she abandoned him hen she finally catches up with them?

This is an exciting romantic suspense that focuses on one mother¿s worse nightmare, the abduction of a child. The metamorphosis of Amy from CEO to hunter feels genuine because in either position she seems like she suffers from obsessive behavior syndrome (call me Dr. Harriet). A final twist will surprise readers, but seems out of character, as the groundwork of that relationship never emerged in the plot. Still fans will travel the road until the end as this thriller never eases off the throttle until the climax is done.

Harriet Klausner