“I’m thinking about my sister. In her need to blame an outside force for what happened to our lives, she fastened irrationally on Luke Campbell. I can still see the hatred working under her rigidly calm expression when our conversation shifts to him.
“But it didn’t start with Luke. It started with a basset hound named Maude who chased a squirrel into the path of a car.”
Rachel Goddard is a veterinarian. One rainy afternoon Maude is carried into the office and handed off to the surgeon. While Mrs. Coleman is with the doctor, Rachel finds three year-old Kristin Coleman in the reception area, crying inconsolably for her mother.
Rachel holds the little girl and finds herself transported to a moment so clear it is as if she is in it again. Rachel is a child of five, standing in a playgound, trying to calm her three year-old sister, saying over and over, “She’ll come back, she will, please don’t cry.”
From that point Rachel becomes consumed with the need to confront her past, to remember the time when her father died. Her mother, Judith, a psychologist, insists that Rachel was devastated by her father’s death and that it would be damaging for her to resurrect the experience.
Rachel doesn’t understand why there is only one picture of her father, located in her mother’s bedroom. Her sister, Michelle, studying for her doctorate in psychology, agrees with Judith; things in the past belong in the past. But Rachel believes that her mother and her sister are working together to keep things from her. Rachel knows well that she does not have the bond with her mother that Michelle does and she starts to question her place in their family of three.
The family rift becomes more obvious when Rachel enters a relationship with her boss and co-worker, Luke Campbell. Judith hates Luke from the moment they meet and Rachel is torn between her mother and this man she is learning to trust.
HEAT OF THE MOON is a psychological thriller and a lengthy review carries the danger of revealing too much. I read the first page and didn’t put the book down until I had finished the last page. I look forward to reading the next two books in the series.
I would not have discovered Sandra Parshall if Leighton Gage had not told me about DorothyL.