By Karen Harper
Publication Date: 12/30/2014
My Rating: 4.5 Stars
Series: Cold Creek #3
Haunted by the past Cold Creek is a place with a dark history, especially for the Lockwoods. Now adults, the three Lockwood sisters are still recovering from the events that led to the destruction of their family when they were children.
Determined to move forward, Tess and Kate are making fresh starts, ready to put badeven deadlymemories to rest and settle happily in the small but booming town. And they're hoping their older sister, Charlene, can do the same.
Char is back in town seeking comfort as she figures out her next move. A social worker used to difficult situations, she soon runs afoul of some locals who think she's sticking her nose where it doesn't belong. She's certain something sinister is being covered up, and when she witnesses Matt Rowan being run off the road, she knows she's right.
Working together, Matt and Char figure uncovering the truth will be dangerous, but living in Cold Creek won't be safe for any of them until its secrets are revealed.
A special thank you to Harlequin/Mira and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Karen Harper returns with her third installment in the suspenseful Cold Creek romantic thriller trilogy, BROKEN BONDS, her most intense and controversial novel of fracking.
Hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”, is the process of drilling and injecting fluid into the ground at a high pressure in order to fracture shale rocks to release natural gas inside.
If you have read the other two books in the series, Cold Creek is set in the Appalachia, with many dark secrets, and the Lockwood sisters are uncovering them one by one. As they struggle to find their place in life and the men to love, they have to overcome many obstacles.
Each book centers on one of the sisters, Tess, Kate, and now Charlene, the third sister. Everyone in town knows or has heard of the Lockwood sisters as Tess was kidnapped years ago and Kate with the chaos at the Adena burial mound.
SHATTERED SECRETS, Tess’s story, FORBIDDEN GROUND, Kate’s story, and BROKEN BONDS, Charlene’s story. Three very different sisters, three desirable and dangerous men, and three endangered lives.
Charlene is a social worker and recently moved from out West to join her sisters in Cold Creek. As the book opens she is visiting one of our clients at their respective home, and as she is leaving, she witnesses a truck literally hanging from a cliff.
She is instrumental in grabbing Matt from the truck before it goes over. Matt was run off the road by a black pickup truck, and someone tried to kill him. Was the killer after Matt or his senior partner, the person who normally drives the company truck he was driving.
Matt is the general manager of a new luxury community of Lake Azure. Of course, Charlene finds him easy on the eye, and she is determined to help him find the person who did this. There are so many suspects, as the local cult, Hear Ye, or Matt’s boss, as no one is safe until they uncover the secrets.
Most recently, the issue of lucrative fracking contracts going to only a few select people was causing rifts among the locals. Fracking brought in business, but the truck drivers and rig men caused problems in the once-pristine area.
Matt understood money talked; however, he could not understand why his boss, Royce could not see his lucrative new business could hurt the human and natural environment of his big Lake Azure investment.
Charlene (Char) knew some of the locals resented the so-called rich folk who built luxury getaway homes or weekend places at Lake Azure, so possibly Matt had some enemies. In the process Sherriff McCabe (Gabe) helps with the investigation (married to her younger sister).
A very interesting read, as they solve the mystery and while fracking breaks up rock and fractures the ground to force out gas and oil; other kinds of fracking are at work in relation to broken marriages, broken family ties, and a split in the community that force emotions to the surface.
As the Lockwood sisters, and their men, are working together, they finally come home, to get their happy ending and help turn Cold Creek and Lake Azure back into its rightful place for a satisfying ending. I loved the cabin in the woods! Enjoyed this series and look forward to reading more by Harper.
Would highly recommend reading the books in order, even though they could be read as a standalone; however, you will want to catch up with familiar faces and names from the previous books. Each book has different issues which surround the area, with a combination of suspense, intrigue, mystery and romance!