Black Hills
By Sarah W
Jul 1, 2009 - 3:09:02 PM

Lil Chance and Cooper Sullivan grew up as best friends when Coop spent time with his grandparents in South Dakota. Coop expected to hate the open spaces and rural life that South Dakota represented to him, instead, he gained a best friend, two grandparents who supported and loved him, and a love for horses, farming, and a simpler way of life. Eventually Lil and Coop’s friendship changed into something more intimate and special. But young love is not always destined for happily-ever-after and Lil and Coop eventually went their own ways.

Lil grows up to become a wildlife biologist, running her own refuge, the Chance Wildlife Refuge, where she protects her beloved cougars, among other big cats. She is ready to settle back into running her refuge again after a long trip when things change. Coop is back in South Dakota, this time to stay, or so he claims. Lil professes not to care. He broke her heart once and she will not let him do it again.

When mysterious happenings start to occur around the refuge, Lil is sure it is just pranks. But the “pranks” keep escalating, getting more violent and dangerous. Cooper is not going to let anyone hurt Lil. As a former cop and private investigator, Coop has the skills to track the person who is trying to hurt Lil and her life’s work. But the killer is sly and not afraid to take risks. Lil and Coop will have to work together, put their talents together, to find out who is trying to hurt the refuge, before it is too late. Will their second chance at love end before it even starts?

Nora Roberts is back with a new romantic suspense story. Lil has a passion for protecting animals and it comes through on every page of the story, whether in her distress over the loss of wildlife, or in her playful manner with Baby, the cougar who will not leave the refuge. It is very interesting reading about the work of animal protectors and Lil is certainly one of the best. She is a protector through and through. Her protection even extends to Cooper, even as he hurt her when they ended their relationship. Lil is hoping to try again with friendship, but Coop wants more. He knows he is finally ready for the love Lil so willingly offered him before.

Coop is worried for Lil but he will put his skills to work to try to figure out what is going on. Cooper is also a protector. He loves his grandparents and will do anything he can for the two people in his life that gave him love and opened their home to him when he most needed it. Coop has quite a bit of emotional baggage and he works through it as best he can. But when it comes to Lil, he fights for her and their future. He will not let her go again.

BLACK HILLS has its moments of suspense and passion. Lil and Coop are interesting characters whose lives will draw you in and keep you reading.

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