SWEETER THAN SIN - Shiloh Walker
A Secrets and Shadows Novel, Book 2
St. Martin's
ISBN: 978-1-250-03241-6
October 2014
Romantic Suspense

Madison, Indiana Present Day

Twenty years ago Pete Sutter, a preacher in the small town of Madison, as well as his wife and seventeen-year-old son went missing and sent two young men into downward spirals that messed up their lives.  Not because of the Sutter's disappearance, but because that night Lana Rossi also disappeared.  Though Noah Benningfield was her boyfriend, Adam Brascum had been in love with her for years, but their age difference kept him from asking her out.  The night of the disappearance, Lana called Adam asking for help, but then called him back and begged him to lie about talking to her if asked.  That lie, as well as knowing Lana needed him and he didn't help her, caused Adam to try to drown his sorrows in alcohol and women.  Though he's given up the drinking, it wasn't until scandal once again rocked their little town that Adam decided to take a break from women.

The mysterious woman he meets in his bar one night has Adam rethinking his recent celibacy decision.  She does everything she can to discourage his interest, in spite of the attraction between them, but Adam can't get her out of his mind.  It's obvious she's hiding something, and considering all the secrets coming to light recently, the last thing he needs is more mystery.

In the first novel of the Secrets and Shadows series, disturbing secrets came to light concerning some of the so-called upstanding citizens of the town.  In SWEETER THAN SIN, the town is dealing with the fallout and trying to figure out who all was involved.  Adam can't help but wonder if what happened with Lana and the Sutter family twenty years ago is at all related to the revelations about the town, and wondering brings back the nightmares.  The guilt over not helping Lana that night almost destroyed both Adam and Noah, but Noah is finally getting on with his life and about to be married.  Adam would like to move beyond the past, but there are still too many unanswered questions, and the new woman in his life complicates matters.

Though readers will learn more about the mysteries of Madison, there are still some unknowns about what happened twenty years ago and what's been happening since. To get a better sense of the people involved as well as the secrets, it's probably best to read the series in order, but either way, SWEETER THAN SIN is a compelling tale.

Jennifer Bishop