Roberts (Shelter in Place) cleverly blends the past into the present as abuse survivors discover the healing power of love. Zane Bigelow and his sister, Britt, grew up in the wealthy Lakeview Terrace development in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Their father, Graham, a prominent physician, physically abused them, abetted by his wife, Eliza. At 15, Zane stood up to his father and went to the police; Graham and Eliza were imprisoned. Years later, Darby McCray leaves the suburbs of Baltimore and her abusive husband to relocate to Lakeview and build her landscaping business there; Zane also returns to Lakeview from Raleigh and decides to set up a small private practice as an attorney. When Zane and Darby meet, sparks ignite. As she sells him on the amazing landscaping she can provide for his new home, he’s drawn to her pure beauty and kind, friendly nature. Their relationship becomes more serious, and Darby becomes a beloved part of the community, but threats from the past come back to haunt Zane and his newfound happiness. Roberts’s latest is full of powerful, magnetic characters who have overcome terrible situations. Suspense and sensual romance are expertly combined in this riveting story. Agent: Amy Berkower, Writers House. (July)
From the Publisher
"Roberts’s latest is full of powerful, magnetic characters who have overcome terrible situations. Suspense and sensual romance are expertly combined in this riveting story." - Publishers Weekly
"Heartfelt . . .Roberts continues to wow readers . . . an impressive addition to her remarkable literary canon." -Booklist
"Roberts combines complex characters with a vivid setting to create a real page-turner...this contemporary fiction mixed with a bit of suspense is completely engaging." - Library Journal
"Readers can always count on Nora Roberts to deliver high-octane thrillers that focus on the bonds of small-town life, dark secrets and the prospect of new love complicated by evil lurking around sharp corners. She doesn't disappoint...a chilling, suspenseful story that proves how appearances can be utterly deceiving." - Shelf Awareness
"Pull out your tissues and be prepared to cry...staggeringly emotional. Nora Roberts is a master at crafting realistic characters who tug at your heartstrings." - Fresh Fiction
"[Under Currents] is brilliantly plotted and unrelentingly propulsive. It is a beautifully written story about the fragility of life and the power of the past and the need to fight back... a highly recommended novel for this summer." - The Washington Book Review
Zane Bigelow and Darby McCray have something in common—broken noses received at the hands of their abusers. As a teenager, Zane survived a horrendous attack that ended with his mother and father behind bars, and young newlywed Darby's ex-husband went to prison after putting her in the hospital. Now living in a small lakeside town in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, they meet and fall in love. They are survivors, made stronger by their experiences but also because they have each other. Zane and Darby may have moved on, but their abusers have not, and with them out and looking for revenge, that strength will be put to the test. VERDICT Prolific and hugely popular author Roberts (Shelter in Place; Year One), who also writes as J.D. Robb ("In Death" series), combines complex characters with a vivid setting to create a real page-turner. Broken into four sections, each of which packs a punch, this contemporary fiction mixed with a bit of suspense is completely engaging. Expect wide appeal beyond the author's regular fanbase. [See Prepub Alert, 1/23/19.]—Vicki Briner, Broomfield, CO
An abused boy fights back, escapes, then returns as an attorney to his beloved hometown, but just as he's falling in love with a transplanted landscaper, a series of attacks from shadowy enemies jeopardizes their happiness.
"From the outside, the house in Lakeview Terrace looked perfect." Which of course means that it wasn't. We're introduced to the horrifying Dr. Graham Bigelow, who beats his wife and, increasingly as the boy gets older, his son, Zane. On the night of Zane's prom, a particularly savage attack puts him and his sister in the hospital, and his father blames Zane, landing him in jail. Then his sister stands up for him, enlisting the aid of their aunt, and everything changes, mainly due to Zane's secret diaries. Nearly 20 years later, Zane leaves a successful career as a lawyer to return to Lakeview, where his aunt and sister live with their families, deciding to hang a shingle as a small-town lawyer. Then he meets Darby McCray, the landscaper who's recently relocated and taken the town by storm, starting with the transformation of his family's rental bungalows. The two are instantly intrigued by each other, but they move slowly into a relationship neither is looking for. Darby has a violent past of her own, so she is more than willing to take on the risk of antagonizing a boorish local family when she and Zane help an abused wife. Suddenly Zane and Darby face one attack after another, and even as they grow ever closer under the pressure, the dangers become more insidious. Roberts' latest title feels a little long and the story is slightly cumbersome, but her greatest strength is in making the reader feel connected to her characters, so "unnecessary details" can also charm and engage.
Another success for the publishing phenom.