PROMISE NOT TO TELL Jayne Ann Krentz
Cutler, Sutten & Solinski Series , Book 2
Berkley
ISBN-13:  978-0-399-58527-2
January 2018
Romantic Suspense

Lost Island, Washington Present Day

Twenty years ago, Quinton Zane was the leader of a cult who locked everyone in a wooden compound on an island and set it on fire, killing every woman who had left her life behind to follow him.  He also left eight children in a separate building to die in the fire; however a policeman named Anson Salinas broke in and managed to save them all.  All the mothers died in the fire, but three of the boys had no one, so he became their father.  Virginia Troy was nine years old and her grandmother came to claim and raise her, but the horror of that day lingers.

Hannah Brewster had been one of the members of that cult that lived, but her mind is broken; her only way to cope was to paint.  Now her mind is thinking that the leader of that cult from years ago, Quinton Zane, is back to kill her.  She paints her last picture on the wall of her house on the island, and sets a fire and burns it down, running toward the cliffs as she feels, sees, and hears Quinton running after her.  She is determined to escape him and throws herself over the cliffs for her few last desperate moments of freedom.

Virginia Troy now owns an art gallery, and years ago Hannah Brewster started bringing her paintings to her.  They all show the night of the burning building and what happened, very disturbing.  Virginia would never sell the paintings, who would buy that terror, but she pays Hannah and keeps them in a back room at her gallery.  Another lady named Abigail also survived the cult and was Hannah's only friend, but after she died recently, Hannah's mental condition went downhill.  After Hannah's death, Virginia goes to a private investigation agency in Seattle headed by Anson Salinas, and the three young men he adopted are its investigators.  Finally, Virginia has someone who can relate to her story that has seriously messed up her life forever, and can investigate whether Hannah was killed, and did not commit suicide.

Jayne Anne Krentz is continuing the search for whether Quinton Zane is alive, and what happened to those he left behind hurt and broken all those years ago.  Anson, Cabot, and the other two men left behind in the fire work together, and have made it their life's job to find out what happened to Quinton Zane.  Neither Cabot nor Virginia is able to manage relationships with the opposite sex due to their problems, but it is Anson and his sons job to either confirm Quinton is dead or track him down and see who is first to kill him.  The money Quinton stole from his members appears to have been hidden all those years ago, and someone is determined to kill anyone who gets in the way of finding who has the key to the missing funds.

Secondary characters are Anson Salinas, and Jessica, Virginia's assistant.  Tucker Fleming is an important key to the mystery of Quinton Zane, and a murderer who also likes fires.  Josh Preston owns an Information Technology company that employs several people involved in the mystery surrounding Hannah's death and the deaths of others.  Abigail, who was Hannah's friend and owned a B&B on the island, will be the key to almost everything that happened then and now.

PROMISE NOT TO TELL will keep you on the edge of your seat reliving the death of the members of the cult twenty years ago and how events from then are related to what is going on now.   Cabot and Virginia live with the after-effects of terror after over twenty years, and each has despaired of a romantic relationship, but since they know what the other has gone through, the heat is turned up between them.  Another of the three sons adopted by Anson is Max Cutler whose story is in WHEN ALL THE GIRLS HAVE GONE (November 2016). Quinton Zane is still involved in all three of the men's lives, and they will continue looking for him one way or the other.

Carolyn Crisher