Paige is a CIA agent who has been relocated to the small town of Split Creek, Oklahoma, as a librarian, in order to conduct further investigation on a fellow renegade agent who is running for Oklahoma governor. She lives in constant paranoia over the agent finding her out or someone in town finding out who she really is. She is also fighting a relationship with the town's high school football coach, who she really loves. She does not want to fall into a relationship at such a crucial time. Also, something from her past she thought she had buried has resurfaced at the worst time possible, causing her to take drastic action. Her nemesis is closing in, and someone in town has discovered her true identity. And time is running out...
I was skeptical at first when I read the description of this book, but in the end, the book was not all that bad. It definitely could have been better, but it sure could have been worse. There are many strong and realistic points, but DiAnn could not resist several "suspense" cliches. The book did not live up to its full potential, but it did not go as low as it could have gone.
For starters, Paige is one of the better female suspense leads I have ever met. She is realistic, believable, and imperfect. I wish I could say the same about the rest of the characters, however. There is a perfect male lead and several other undeveloped characters. Paige is really the only good character, leaving a major gap in the character department.
Paige really does love her perfect male lead, but she does not want to sabotage her career. At least it isn't one of those I-hate-you-then-I-love-you deals. Paige has an interesting opinion about TV dramas on CIA agents, which I wholeheartedly agree with. Her troubled past is also her fault. She is not a victim by far. The high school football subplot did not end in the way I expected it to end (even though DiAnn seemed lost when it came to real in-game action, offensive techniques, and general final scores). Also, Paige never really faces her nemesis in a showdown. The case is left open, unresolved, and in progress by the time the book ended, which is realistic.
So what's the problem? The romantic subplot pans out, unfortunately. Most of the characters are suffering for life. There is an unnecessary showdown with an extra villain. This book was a hard call, but the good is not enough to make up for the bad.
In short, DiAnn Mills has a lot of potential if she will line up her ducks correctly. I look forward to what she will produce next.