Of course, the name alone made me think of the Stepford Wives. Would it be predictable? Yes and no.
Jade was married and pregnant, so she gave up her world-traveling journalistic career and moved to a small town in Massachusetts.
She had a hard time adjusting to such a laid back atmosphere, until her visions started. She had never been psychic or had visions before, but Rebecca refused to be ignored.
To help pass the time and find out the secrets that were being covered up, she joined the knitting club. If her thinking was correct, these women would know everything that went on in town and she could learn about Rebecca from Gossip Central.
Adelaide, one of the ladies from the knitting club, missed another meeting. Jade used the excuse of her pride in her finished baby hat to visit her. That was when she met Lily, her cat. There was something special about her, she seemed human.
While she was there, Jason came in. He had been in prison, convicted of the rape and murder of Rebecca. He sat and had tea with Jade and Adelaide. On Jade's walk home, it went through her my mind that it couldn't have been him who tortured and killed Rebecca. She felt he was a victim.
The visions would only show part of what really happened. She kept trying to see more.
She was determined to prove Jason's innocence, but someone was just as determined to stop her. The question was - how far would they go?
5 STARS - Would Buy It For Them (lol)
I love Lada Ray's books and her writing keeps me in suspense, waiting for the next surprise, twist, turn, or delightfully evil surprise. Okay, I may be a little sick, but I love reading about the evil that men do. The minute I think I know what is going on and where the story is taking me, she pulls something else out of her magical bag of mystery.
The books I have read of Lada's have been pretty heavy and this seemed to be a departure from them. But, wait, she always has a surprise or two that you don't see coming and she didn't fail me now. I knew who the real murderers were early on, but she kept me guessing, as I tried to figure out how she was going to prove it. She puts in all the details to make you see how depraved people can be and the torture Rebecca suffered.
The cover is gorgeous and the title is so appropriate. Yes, the title does give away the background of the book, but the story goes so much further. A small town, with all the things that entails. Gossips. Good old boys club made up of the rich and connected. And a murder, but the victim, Rebecca, refuses to be silenced by death, reaching out to Jade for justice.
I loved her descriptions of the characters. They are so real, they can be your neighbor, your friend, or maybe even you.
Jason - an Adonis, spoiled
Marc - ambitious and full of himself, a sleazebag and politician. An oxymoron?
Peter - roving eyes and naughty fingers, a womanizer, married for money
Jack - a nerd, bad with women, a loner
Nick - chief of police.
The paranormal events are so believable. I have actually heard of some things that happen in the book, happening in real life. I have heard that people really have visions. Someone I know swears she has a psychic friend. The friend really does help the police occasionally solve cases. Doesn't it have to be true then? Is it really paranormal or is it something else?
Of course, there are always the pet lovers who say their critters talk to them and they understand every word of it. ^_^
The emotions I felt as she uncovered the sordid details ranged from disgust to anger, sorrow to happiness, and a feeling of relief when it was over. Even though it wasn't happy ever after for everyone, I felt very satisfied.
I won this book on Lada Ray's blog, along with Gold Train and Green Desert, books in the Accidental Spy Adventure Series. Once I read her book Earth Shifter, I was eager to read more.
I look forward to reading many more books from Lada Ray.
Stepford USA (Accidental Spy Small Town Adventure)