A pretty good suspense story, but just an okay love story. Lil comes across as sort of an immature brat. She has built up a huge grudge because she thinks Coop abandoned her years ago. Well, he's back now, but she keeps pushing him away, and comes across as pretty unreasonable. So there's tension between them, but that doesn't add up to romantic chemistry. I liked Lil's parents and Coop's grandparents and actually thought those relationships were the best part of the book. I also liked the little love story between Tansy and Farley, although it wasn't quite believable. All in all, I enjoyed it as a diversion, but I'm not completely sold on Nora Roberts or the romantic suspense genre. Listened to on CD, and the narrator did a very good job with the various voices.
A summer at his grandparents' South Dakota ranch is not eleven-year-old Cooper Sullivan's idea of a good time. But things are a bit more bearable now that he's discovered the neighbor girl, Lil Chance, and her homemade batting cage. Each year, with Coop's annual summer visit, their friendship deepens from innocent games to stolen kisses, but there is one shared experience that will forever haunt them: the terrifying discovery of a hiker's body.
Twelve years after they last walked together hand in hand, fate has brought them back to the Black Hills when the people and things they hold most dear need them most. An investigator in New York, Coop recently left his fastpaced life to care for his aging grandparents and the ranch he has come to call home. Though the memory of his touch still haunts her, Lil has let nothing stop her dream of opening the Chance Wildlife Refuge, but something . . . or someone . . . has been keeping a close watch. When small pranks and acts of destruction escalate into the heartless killing of Lil's beloved cougar, recollections of an unsolved murder in these very hills have Coop springing to action to keep Lil safe. Lil and Coop both know the natural dangers that lurk in the wild landscape of the Black Hills. But now they must work together to unearth a killer of twisted and unnatural instincts who has singled them out as prey.