For fans of Maya Banks, Allison Brennan, and Lori Foster, a thrilling new romantic suspense novel from Ella Grace
AT THE STROKE OF MIDNIGHT, THE HEAT BEGINS
On a hot southern night, with a storm on the horizon, a family is shattered. Three beautiful daughters—Savannah, Samantha, and Sabrina Wilde—go on with their lives, each significantly changed, as they bear the memory of the murder-suicide that killed their parents. For years, they have stayed away from Midnight, Alabama. Until Midnight calls them home.
Savannah is the first one back, when a grueling case in Nashville leads the young prosecutor to seek shelter in the quiet of the once grand Wilde mansion. But when she finds letters casting doubt on her family’s dark, shameful past, she realizes that peace in Midnight is a shallow façade and sinister secrets lurk beneath the surface. Zach Tanner, once the town’s bad boy, is now the new police chief and still has a wild hold over her. Zach can feel it, too, but he hurt Savannah once. As teenagers, they broke every rule together. Now it’s his job to keep her safe, even though he isn’t sure who her enemies are—or which ones might be his own.
Praise for Midnight Secrets
“[Ella] Grace accents this tale with plenty of small-town flavor as regret and dangerous secrets threaten deadly consequences. Good stuff!”—RT Book Reviews
“An entertaining romantic suspense tale [that] combines an attractive small town setting with [a] chilling murder mystery.”—Night Owl Romance
“Good, solid romantic suspense as written by one of the best in the business.”—Fresh Fiction
“This kickoff novel sets a high standard for the series.”—Kirkus Reviews
“This is a strong start to what promises to be a really good series. The romance was utterly satisfying, the suspense creepy enough, the mystery puzzling and the Southern setting appropriate to the story.”—The Book Nympho
About the Author
Ella Grace is a graduate of the University of Memphis with a degree in social work. She lives in Alabama with her husband and a menagerie of pets.
Read an Excerpt
Midnight SecretsThe Wildefire Series
By Ella Grace
Ballantine BooksCopyright © 2013 Ella Grace
All right reserved.
Eighteen years ago
Beckett Wilde stumbled from his car and inhaled, taking fragrant honeysuckle-scented air deep into his lungs. Thunder rumbled like a far-off freight train. Brilliant streaks of jagged lightning lit up the ink-black sky. He took in another deep breath. Rain was coming. The drenching that had been threatening for days was finally on its way. And the humidity would be a thousand times worse. Summertime in Midnight was always hotter than a firecracker lit at both ends, but this year was breaking all sorts of records.
Wiping the sweat from his brow, Beckett shook his head to clear it and then narrowed his eyes to focus on the large structure in front of him. Hopefully by the time he made it inside, he wouldn’t feel like he was going to throw up all that good Kentucky bourbon he’d just guzzled.
As he weaved toward the three-story mansion that had been his home since his birth, he cursed his lack of coordination. Time was when he’d been able to throw back a half dozen bourbons before he felt even the slightest difference. Tonight he’d begun to feel the effects after two. Damn, he was getting old.
Actually, it was probably his lack of drinking that had created his low tolerance. With Maggie and the girls, he didn’t feel the need to soften the edges of reality. They made getting up every morning something to look forward to—not dread.
The argument with Maggie at the country club had taken him off guard. Half the town had been there to witness their spat. By the time he got to Shorty’s Bar a mile down the road, the other half knew about it, too. Damnable busybodies.
A few drinks in, he had begun to regret leaving her there like that. A wise man would’ve taken her home and had an adult conversation. Problem was, he and wisdom only had a passing acquaintance. Most times he did dumb stuff and Maggie would roll her eyes, shake her head, and forgive him. Being the handsome and charming only child of one of the oldest families in Alabama, Beckett got out of trouble about as easy as he got into it. Somehow Maggie loved him in spite of all that.
She had been in a tizzy even before they’d left the house. Their triplet daughters, Savannah, Samantha, and Sabrina, had left for summer camp this morning, and the girls had almost driven her crazy with their excitement and anxiety. Since Beckett had left for work early, he’d missed the brunt of their exuberant enthusiasm. He couldn’t say he regretted that. He adored his young’uns, but three overexcited ten-year-olds and a frazzled, exasperated woman buzzing around the house in a frenzy was something he could handle for only a few minutes at a time.
Poor Maggie had been exhausted when he’d gotten home. He had hoped a night out at the country club would’ve put her in a better frame of mind. And it probably would have if he hadn’t flirted with the new cocktail waitress. But those kinds of antics usually floated off his wife’s back. She knew he wasn’t serious. Hell yeah, he’d been a rabble-rouser and womanizer years ago, but once he’d fallen for Maggie, he’d given up those ways. Didn’t mean he didn’t like to charm the ladies. He was Southern, born and bred—stuff like that was ingrained in him.
The girls were gone. Even his daddy, who lived in the guesthouse out back, was in Mobile for the weekend. They were alone . . . that hadn’t happened in a month of Sundays. Instead of drowning his troubles in bourbon, he should’ve taken advantage of this opportunity to woo his wife again. Didn’t she know she was his life?
Cursing his selfishness, Beckett sped up, almost running the rest of the way to the side of the house, where he always entered.
The lights were off, but since it was going on midnight, Maggie had probably gone on to bed. He pushed open the door, giving little thought to why it wasn’t locked. In Midnight, folks didn’t have to lock their doors—one of the many advantages to living in a small town.
Beckett was in the middle of the kitchen when the first hint of something not being right hit him. It was too quiet. He told himself that the absence of his daughters just made the house feel different.
Assured that his uneasiness was unfounded, Beckett took another step, then froze. No, it was more than an empty house. The silence was eerily quiet, almost ominous. He shifted his gaze to the left and saw that the light above the kitchen island wasn’t on. Since this was the only light in the house that was kept on at night, he began to wonder. Then he noticed that the fridge wasn’t humming and the whir of all the ceiling fans on the first floor was absent and the reason for the silence hit him. Hell, no wonder. The electricity was out—it was nothing more than that.
He dropped his keys on the counter. Though it was pitch dark, he knew every nook and cranny of this house. To the left of the counter was a small desk. Beckett opened the desk drawer and withdrew a flashlight. He clicked it on and pulled his cellphone from the clip at his belt. Maggie was probably asleep and didn’t even know about the outage. If the power company couldn’t come out till tomorrow, it was going to be a long, hot night.
As he punched in numbers, a sound in the next room stopped him. Lifting his head, he looked toward the entrance to the dining room. “Mags? How long’s the power been out?”
No answer. Frowning, Beckett stepped forward. “Are you still mad at me? I’m sorry, honey, you know how I—”
Lightning flashed through the large bay window, casting light in the room and revealing a huddled body on the floor. Maggie!
Beckett rushed forward. “Maggie? Honey? What happened?” He fell to his knees beside her, barely noticing the warm wetness that seeped through the fabric of his pants.
Fear spiraled through him as he touched her face, which was soft and warm. His fingers went to her neck, feeling for a pulse. Nothing. Shock and denial screaming silently through him, Beckett reached for the cellphone he had dropped. An ambulance . . . he had to call an ambulance. Maggie was young and healthy—whatever had happened, they could save her. Dear Lord, he couldn’t lose her . . . he couldn’t!
“Don’t do that.”
Beckett whirled around. A man stood at the door. Though it was dark, he had no trouble recognizing him—the man had been in his house many times over the years. “What did you do?” Beckett whispered hoarsely.
“I never meant this to happen.”
Rage and disbelief shot through him. “You bastard!” Jumping to his feet, Beckett lunged toward the man he’d once called friend. A searing pain in the back of his head stopped him mid-flight. Stunned, Beckett crashed to the floor.
A deep, familiar voice rumbled above him. “Go turn the power back on. I’ve got another idea. This will work out better anyway.”
Facedown on the hardwood floor, Beckett tried to move. The agony in his head intensified, stopping all movement. He closed his eyes and then opened them again when he heard voices. A small, insistent whisper in his pain-blurred mind told him to get up—that something had happened—but his brain wouldn’t function properly. The pain was unbearable.
“What . . . happened?” Beckett mumbled, barely able to recognize the voice as his own.
Bright light flooded the room. Beckett blinked; finally able to raise his head slightly, he tried to focus. “What happened?” he asked again.
The deep voice above him answered, “You killed your wife . . . that’s what happened.”
“What?” Beckett whispered.
“Nobody’s going to believe that,” another familiar voice whispered.
“They’ll believe what I tell them to believe.”
Beckett knew he had to get up. Something was seriously wrong. Maggie . . . he had to get to Maggie. Dear Lord, what had they done to his Maggie? He tried to lift himself from the floor. Another pain seared the back of his head, more agonizing than before. Beckett’s mouth opened to scream out with agony, rage, and betrayal . . . only a slight whimper emerged. Thick darkness blanketed his mind, cloaking him in its smothering, consuming embrace. Then nothing.
Eight years later
“Savvy, have you seen my pearl necklace?”
“I think I saw it on your dresser yesterday,” Savannah answered. A huff of exasperation followed. “My hair still won’t lie down.”
A soft snort of disgust and then, “I can’t believe you two are acting so silly over some dumb dance.”
Smiling, his arms crossed, Daniel Wilde sat patiently outside the bedrooms of his granddaughters and listened to their excited chatter. Tonight’s dance was a special event for all of them—a benchmark moment they would all remember.
Savannah, shy and much too serious about most things, had surprised them all last month when she had firmly announced that she would be going to the dance. As it was her senior prom, she’d stated, it was a rite of passage for any teenager.
Her sister Samantha had been delighted to hear that news. Of course, there’d never been any question of whether Samantha would attend. The most popular girl in school, she had turned down at least a half dozen invitations before finally accepting a date from the star basketball player.
Their sister Sabrina, rebellious and sure to do the opposite of what people wanted or expected, had adamantly announced that she would most definitely not be going. Thankfully, and with much coercion from her sisters, she had changed her mind.
Uniquely individual, but in many ways so wonderfully the same, the girls were the joy of his life. Dear Lord, how he loved them.
After Beckett’s and Maggie’s deaths, he had assumed responsibility for their care. Though the tragedy of his son’s and daughter-in-law’s deaths had made him want to lie down and die, too, he hadn’t been able to wallow in his grief. Three devastated ten-year-old girls had needed him. Little did they know that they had probably saved his life.
Raising the girls hadn’t been easy, but any sacrifices he’d made had been worthwhile. Other than the occasional advice he’d sought from some of his female relatives and friends, Daniel hadn’t wanted or needed help. People had come out of the woodwork offering their assistance. A few had even offered to take one or two of the girls to raise as their own. Daniel had vehemently refused. Not just because he didn’t want the sisters separated or because they were his granddaughters. He’d had to do this for Maggie and Beckett. He’d failed them in so many ways. Taking care of their daughters was the very least he could do. And though he still grieved over the loss, he didn’t regret one moment of raising these amazing young women.
Hearing the whispers and giggles go silent, Daniel called out, “You girls about ready? I want to get some pictures before your beaus get here.”
Savannah came from Samantha’s room. The girls’ bedrooms all connected with one another—something their mother, Maggie, had insisted on when she learned she was having triplet daughters. She had said they would be one another’s best friends. She had been right. Though each girl, especially Samantha, had her own friends, the sisters were extremely close.
Daniel beamed at the demure but lovely picture Savannah made. “You look beautiful.”
The uncertain expression changed to a glowing smile. “Thanks, Granddad. I’m glad you talked me into buying a new one instead of wearing last year’s recital dress.” Slender, graceful hands smoothed down the off-white satin. “I like it even better than I did when I tried it on at the store.”
Before Daniel could speak, Samantha, a vision in ice blue, came through the doorway. “That off-white color looks great on you, Savvy.”
Savannah threw her an appreciative grin. “Thanks for picking it out for me. I just wish I could do something with my hair.”
“You need to stop trying to tame it. Let it go free.”
“Or get it cut off, like I did.”
Sabrina exited her bedroom and Daniel almost swallowed his tongue. The girls had gone shopping by themselves and this was his first look at their attire. Savannah and Samantha had chosen to wear elegant evening gowns. Samantha’s off-the-shoulder dress was a bit more daring than Savannah’s square-cut neckline with thin shoulder straps, but still respectable. The outfit Sabrina had opted for was neither elegant nor subtle. The only description he could come up with was “harem costume.” In fact, the last time he’d seen this kind of costume was a rerun of I Dream of Jeannie. Though surely Barbara Eden hadn’t worn combat boots.
“Sabrina Sage Wilde, what in the name of all that’s good and righteous are you wearing?”
Everyone turned at the shrill voice behind them. Gibby Wilcox, Daniel’s second cousin twice removed, had arrived. He had deliberately told her to come half an hour late. Gibby was a good-hearted woman but her nervous fluttering could wear thin at the best of times. He hadn’t thought having her advise three teenaged girls on the proper attire for a prom was necessary. Now he wasn’t sure he had made the right decision.
“I think she looks fabulous,” Savannah defended.
Before Daniel could comment, Samantha nodded emphatically. “I agree. Very avant-garde.”
Always one another’s staunchest allies, as usual the sisters banded together. Daniel watched Sabrina’s expression. The tilted chin spoke of defiance and the sparkle in her eyes told him she was waiting for him to tell her she couldn’t go. He also recognized the vulnerability behind the bravado—an emotion she tried so desperately to hide from the rest of the world.
As the shock wore off, Daniel took a moment to reevaluate Sabrina’s costume. Even with her midriff showing, the outfit was actually much less revealing than both her sisters’. Though demure, Savannah’s gown hugged her slender figure like a second skin, and Samantha’s gown, albeit decent, showed a bit more cleavage than he was truly comfortable with. Thankfully the wrap around her shoulders gave her more coverage. Sabrina was known as the “Wilde child” and had worked hard to earn the nickname. Yes, she had a different look, but that was to be expected. She thrived on being unique.
That settled in his mind, Daniel nodded. “I agree. She does look quite fetching.”
“But, Daniel, surely you can’t . . . I mean . . . she’s a Wilde . . . I . . .” Gibby shut off abruptly, her mouth opening and closing silently like a fish on dry land. A speechless Gibby was a sight to behold. Truth be told, he didn’t think he’d ever seen that happen.
Unfortunately that didn’t last long and she regained her composure quickly. “Well, at least make her wear decent shoes. Those look like something she found on the side of the road.”
“Actually I found them at a Goodwill store in Mobile,” Sabrina said. “They’re very comfortable.”
Daniel clapped his hands to get attention off Sabrina. “Now that everyone’s ready, let’s go out into the garden and take some pictures before your dates get here.”
Giving him a look that told him he was going to get an earful once the girls were gone, Gibby rounded the girls up and herded them downstairs.
Daniel blew out a sigh as he followed behind them. No, raising three teenaged girls hadn’t been easy, but it was the best and most honorable thing he’d ever done. He pushed aside the melancholy. Tonight was for his granddaughters. When the house was empty, he’d take the time to write his daily letter. How his wife, Camille, would have loved tonight’s event. If life had been fair or just, the girls’ mother and grandmother would have both been involved in readying them for this momentous occasion.
After his letter, he’d pour his one bourbon he was allowed each night and raise a glass to his beautiful daughter-in-law and handsome son, and once again apologize for not being wise or courageous enough to do what should have been done.
Excerpted from Midnight Secrets by Ella Grace Copyright © 2013 by Ella Grace. Excerpted by permission of Ballantine Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A Must Read Midnight Secrets is the first book in the Wildefire series by Ella Grace (aka Christy Reece.) Unlike her renowned Last Chance Rescue series, in which the books are driven by action-packed plots, Midnight Secrets is a character driven book with the emphasis more on romance and relationships with elements of mystery and suspense. Midnight Secrets is an excellent book due to the proficient writing of Ella Grace. Everyone in the small southern town of Midnight, Alabama knows that Beckett Wilde killed his wife, Maggie and then hanged himself. Following the scandalous deaths of their parents, ten year old triplets, Savannah, Samantha and Sabrina, are raised by their protective grandfather, Daniel Wilde. Each girl deals with the trauma in her own way but the support each has for her sisters never waivers. Midnight Secrets is Savannah Wilde's story. When she is 18, a shy, innocent college bound Savannah meets her crush, 20 year old Zach Tanner, when he saves her from a dangerous encounter. Savannah and her wealthy family treat Zach, the town's bad boy, as a hero for reasons he cannot fathom. Savannah and Zach fall in love. Zach promises that although they will be separated with her in college and him in the Army, he always will return to her. Ten years later Savannah is a confident and successful prosecutor in Nashville who is threatened by a convicted killer. Her boss orders her to take two months off. Since their grandfather's death two years earlier, none of the sisters have been back to the family mansion in Midnight. Deciding that this is the opportunity to pack up the house for sale, Savannah returns to Midnight, despite knowing that the Chief of Police is Zach Tanner, the man who broke his promise to her. Both of them have matured based upon their experiences over the last ten years. Ms. Grace gives them time to discover who they are as adults. An indulgence rarely given to the reader. Savannah and Zach still are attracted to each other and begin a hot physical relationship. Savannah has trust issues with Zach. He never explained the reason that he vanished from her life. But, Savannah has a secret of her own that she never shared with Zach. Although he does not tell her, he knows that he always has loved her and is determined that they will spend their lives together. When Savannah discovers that her grandfather never believed that her parents' deaths were a murder/suicide, she investigates with Zach. When Savannah is injured in an attempt on her life, Savannah realizes that she is in love with Zach and finally trusts him. The question they face is who Savannah has known her entire life is a murderer and why? In uncovering who committed the crime of killing her parents, Savannah and Zach realize that Midnight is not as it seems and some of its inhabitants are not either. Ms. Grace manages to make a small southern town of about 1400 people one of the characters of the book, not an easy feat. The town and its inhabitants have good points but also flaws, secrets, gossips, adulterers and killers. There is sufficient deceit, betrayal, unknown killers and twists to keep the reader captivated. The characters of Savannah and Zach are very likable, and you find yourself hoping that they have a second chance at love. All the while knowing that they will spend the rest of their lives together. I highly recommend Midnight Secrets to any reader who genuinely enjoys Romantic Suspense, that is, a balance between the two genres. I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Just the right amount of plot, mystery, steam, well written. Loved how it told the how and what of theur beginning relationship, plenty of twist thrown in.
This hooked you right away. Writing is great. Even when you think you know what is going on, you don't. I LOVE LOVE LOVE a good romance novel with mystery and this filled it all. Can't wait for Bri's storry now
Great storyline that hooks you from the beginning. The character development really gets you more involved in the drama. This book has twists, romance, and mystery all combined with a great writing style that makes you want the book to never end. Waiting for the next book in the series!!
I really enjoy a Southern bad boy. I am an over sixties avid reader and they really get the blood pumping. You can feel the heat and atmosphere of the South. The characters are real and you feel the love they have for each other. The sizzle in this book makes my skin tingle.
4.75 stars Excuse me while I stare at the cover again. *sigh* So being the cover slut that I am, when I saw this book was available in NetGalley I went ahead and requested it. Yes, the story caught my attention, but I would be lying to you if I said that was the first thing that caught my eye. Nope, the amazing abs and the title did it for me. And then I started the book and I was hooked! I loved this story and the way the author went about bringing it to the page. From the moment I read the prologue I was intrigued and from then on I couldn't put it down. I'm usually not a fan of flashbacks, so I appreciated the way Ella Grace went about telling Savannah and Zach's story from the beginning without using flashbacks. I don't think I would have enjoyed it otherwise. There were flashbacks along the way, especially from Zach's point of view, but these were done with care and fit the pace of the story and what was happening in present time. They didn't take me out of the story, nor did they detract from my enjoyment of it. Zack was wonderful. A cautious young man when he met Savannah, he grew up to be a strong, stubborn man who, although haunted by his past, he was determined to prove the people of Midnight wrong by returning a hero. He was sexy, caring and determined to make amends with Savannah. Once he revealed his past to her, I was a goner. Savannah was harder for me to connect to though. I felt that she was a bit selfish and quick to judge. Especially after I learned what her secret was. It took me a while to warm up to her, but Zach was a goner for her so I just accepted her. She did have quite a few traits I admired - her determination in finding out the truth, her loyalty to her sisters and her understanding of Zach's situation when he left Midnight. That helped her case a lot. I enjoyed the plot of the story and its resolution. I was kept at the edge of my seat with every event that took place - both in the mystery and romance department. I kept wondering who was responsible for it all and how the author could top the previous love scene when another one came about. It was both intriguing and hot as hell! From the murder mystery to the romance all through the sex scenes and meaningful dialogue, Midnight Secrets was an spectacular start to a series. I enjoyed it from beginning to end I can't wait for the next installment to see what's in store for Samantha and Quinn in Midnight, Alabama. I received this title from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.
This is the first book about the Wilde sisters. I really enjoyed it. Can't wait for Samantha's story
At the age of 10, Savannah, Samantha, and Sabrina’s life was forever changed while they were away at camp. Their father was accused of killing her mother and then committing suicide. Lovingly Raised by their grandfather in their family’s mansion in Midnight, Alabama helped but still their lives’ paths were altered by this tragedy. At the age of 18, Savannah Wilde gave her heart to Zach Tanner. Zach was the misunderstood bad boy of Midnight. Heartbreak , loss and miscommunication rip this young love apart. Ten years later, Savannah returns to pack up and sell the family’s mansion only to discover Zach Tanner has returned and is now Midnight’s Sheriff. The magical chemistry explodes once again between Savannah and Zach, but the hurt and heartbreak is almost too much to face. If that wasn’t enough, someone is very unhappy about Savannah's reappearance in Midnight and they definitely have malevolent intentions toward Savannah Wilde. This was a brilliant story about rekindling lost love, returning war heroes and repairing one’s soul. Yes, I cried, cheered and clawed my kindle in anticipation. What can I say, I loved Midnight Secrets. Take 1 really spicy romance, 1 incredible murder mystery, 1 fabulous grandfather, 3 beautiful, smart, sweet triplets, 1 small home town then stir in the vivid imagination of Ella Grace’s writing and you’ve got a perfect romance! This book is being added to my favorite shelf. This ARC copy of Midnight Secrets was given to me by Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine Books in exchange for an honest review. Publish Date April 30, 2013.
I am so thankful that I won an early copy of this book from Goodreads. Wow!!! Talk about a steamy hot romance with suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat! Ella Grace hits it out of the ball park!! Zach and Savannah are two incredible characters that come so alive that even after you read the last page they stay with you for days. It was a nail biting suspenseful story that had me in tears one minute and shouting for joy the next. Ella Grace could not have done a better job. I'd give it more stars if possible. I've read some reviews that say it started out slow. It starts out when Savannah and Zach were teenagers. I like the fact that we got to know both characters on a personal level as kids instead of flashback memories. The first couple chapters you get to know the hell that Zach survived before he left for the military. He is OUT of the military no one mistake his dog tags on the cover as him still being active military. It is truly a great book.
A new series from Christy Reece writing as Ella Grace! Tone down the creepy elements, add in a small town feel with interesting characters that have their own secrets and you've got Midnight, Alabama. Savannah, one of three sisters, comes home on leave to take care of family business and runs into her old flame Zach. You know 'Zach' the boy from the wrong side of the tracks and the town's favorite "Juvenile Delinquent". Together they find love and there is a mystery to be solved. What I Loved: The world building of Midnight and its characters. The reader was able to see the town come to life whether it was Aunt Gibby, Faye of Faye's Diner or the grocer. The Romance. The reader saw it from its beginning to the present with all its challenges and victories. The mystery. The reader could see as Grace weaves her tale through the town and the peoples lives. And you could even come up with your own (Spooky old house. Ghost?) What I hated: That I have to wait until September to get the next book.
I like that instead of a short prologue; the early years were part of the story – you come to care about them and the difficulties they face. Their young love was tender and sweet. Separated for 10 years, they have found strength in their careers and find themselves together again. Savannah, an Assistant DA is forced to take leave and decides to go home and face the demons from her past, even if it means facing the one person who broke her heart – Zach, Midnight’s Police Chief. With past intrigues, mysteries and dangers threatening Savannah’s life and Zach’s job, they both struggle for safety and to recapture their trust and love in each other. The mystery and suspense wove nicely with the reawakening love and steamy passion they share. Even though some parts seemed a little slow and drawn-out, it set up the groundwork for future books on the sisters. I really enjoyed the story and look forward to the other sisters return home.
I was fortunate enough to win an advanced copy of Ella Grace's Midnight Secrets.I have been reading romantic suspense for years and I can only think of one other book that I had no inkling of who did it.In Midnight Secrets there are constant twists and surprises from the beginning to the end. Reading the prologue had me hooked. I loved that I really got to know the main characters. In most books you don't have that luxury. And the differences between Savannah, Samantha and Sabrina are so realistic. I don't know triplets, but I do know some twins and I could see each of them in one of the girls, especially Savannah and Sabrina. If you have never read romantic suspense this is a perfect one to start with and if you do read romantic suspense, you are going to LOVE this one. Ella Grace knows how to grab your attention and keeps you riveted until the very end. Lots of wonderful dialogue and quotes but this one really stuck with me and is not only true in this book but in life also. Zach speaking, "I think a lot of people are all too willing to believe the worst of someone rather than form an opinion for themselves. Don't believe everything you hear. Even if all evidence points to one answer, be brave enough to learn the truth for yourself."
NUMBER OF HEARTS: 3 Midnight Secrets is the first book in Ella Grace’s Wildfire trilogy. When I started the book and read the prologue I had a lot of hope for this story. This is nothing like starting a story with a set of murders. But from there the story kinda stalled for me. I understand that we needed Savannah & Zach’s history. But I got a little bored. When Savannah comes back to town she and Zach circle each other and circle each other. It took a while for them to finally sit down and hash out the past. While I end up really enjoying the final showdown parts and pieces of the book were just okay. Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley & Ballantine Books in exchange for an honest review. This review is my own opinion and not a paid review.
Well had a blast with Savannah & Zach...Thanks for the adventure Ella Grace...I cried, I laughed, I even felt emotions i never thought i knew possible...Thanks again!
A must read for those who love romantic suspense!
J: Not great, but a fairly good story.
This is the first book in the Wildefire series by Ella Grace, a pseudonym of Romantic Suspense author Christy Reece. I was excited to be reading this one as I am a huge fan of her work an I couldn't wait to see what her 'sexier' work would be like. Savannah is one of triplets, triplets that grew up with a huge dark cloud hanging over them in the form of their parents murder-suicide when they were little. Growing up in a small town can be hard even without such a rumour rich history. Savannah fell in love and had her heart broken at a young age following which she ran as far as she could from her home town of Midnight, Alabama. Now circumstances have her returning home to not only face the past but to face the reason for her heart break. Nothing much has changed in the town but it soon becomes obvious that her presence has someone running scared and secrets start coming to light, is anything like it seems or is there more going on? I would love to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this but I just can't, it took me a few tries to get into the book but once I did I started to enjoy it an the last 1/3 I found I couldn't put it down! The secondary characters I hope to get to know better, I did like the hero - Zack, but for some reason I just didn't relate to Savannah much. I wanted to, but there was something stopping me, something I am struggling to put my finger on. I will be reading the next one!