Marked as Queen of Hearts is an enthralling romantic suspense novel by acclaimed author Blye Donovan, marking the fifth book in her renowned Rolling Brook series. The novel presents an intriguing second-chance romance set in a small town, making it a captivating read for lovers of the genre. The book features the talented crime fiction author Tori Graham, who returns to her hometown in Illinois from California to seek the assistance of her former flame, Captain Rafe Alonso. Rafe has relocated from Chicago to take up a new position as the small town’s police captain. However, a case from his past continues to plague him, and his path crosses once again with his ex-girlfriend, whom he hasn’t seen in ten years. As a new case surfaces, with eerie resemblances to the previous Suit of Hearts Slasher serial killer case, the question arises, could this be a copycat killer, or did Rafe send the wrong man to jail for the previous murders? The book builds an air of mystery and suspense as readers are left to uncover the killer’s true identity.
The author skillfully weaves in several hints about Tori and Rafe’s past relationship in the book’s early stages, compelling readers to continue reading to find out what went wrong between them. The pairing of a crime fiction writer and a police captain is clever, and the author does a fantastic job of taking the reader on a thrilling ride. I liked the two together, and I wished Tori had played a more substantial role in the investigation, collaborating with Rafe to piece together the clues. Nevertheless, the author crafted a thrilling story that hooked me from start to finish. Rafe’s anger issues were a concerning element at times, but they added depth to his character and made him more relatable to readers. In addition, the author took the time to incorporate vivid descriptions of Rolling Brook’s charming small-town setting, immersing the reader in the story. The story’s pace picks up as the reader learns more about the people and town, and an air of mystery and suspense builds throughout the story, keeping me engaged.
Marked as Queen of Hearts is a captivating romantic suspense novel that will have readers on the edge of their seats. Donovan’s masterful storytelling and engaging characters make it a must-read for fans of the genre.
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