THE DEPUTY'S REDEMPTION – Delores Fossen
Sweetwater Ranch, Book 5
Harlequin Intrigue #1551
Sweetwater Springs - The Present
Deputy Colt McKinnon rescues Elise Nichols while she is escaping from someone who ran her off the road and then tried to kill her. She thinks it was Colt. Elise is an old girlfriend of Colt's only recently returned to Sweetwater Springs. She claims the truck and the clothing the assailant wore looked exactly like his. When another truck stops by Colt's truck, he sees that indeed the man's dress and truck do look like his, but the man's story of the accident differs. When some minutes later, as Colt follows the truck into town and the sheriff's office, the driver speeds off. The driver ends up dead in a car explosion. Colt had never gotten over Elise, but now he needs to earn her trust back even though she is a witness in his mother's murder trial, and her testimony may indict his father.
Elise has returned to Sweetwater Springs and the house and land she inherited from her Grandmother. She has plans for returning the property to a working ranch, having saved some money from working as a background investigator for employment applications. Logic points to the McKinnon family as the culprits for the continuing murder attempts on Elise. Suspicion also falls on a few others. One is the man who rented her grandmother's house. Another is a woman who wasn't hired because of a background report Elise provided, and who now shows up at the sheriff's office threatening Elise.
With non-stop action including explosions, booby-traps, shootouts, general mayhem, an old murder who-done-it, and a romance, who could ask for more? While there is a question about whether Colt's mother or father committed murder running through the series, THE DEPUTY'S REDEMPTION stands alone. The characters are interesting Western types, and the intense relationship between Colt and Elise provides the romance. Characters from other books make appearances, but only entice the read to buy the earlier volumes and to complete the series.