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Twisted Shadows    by Patricia Potter order for
Twisted Shadows
by Patricia Potter
Order:  USA  Can
Jove, 2002 (2002)

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* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

In her latest contemporary, veteran romance author Patricia Potter, showcases her versatility with this modern tale of hidden identities, family secrets, mob connections, revenge and plenty of plot twists and turns.

When Samantha Carroll learns that her life is a lie, she's stunned - and even more so when she discovers that she has a twin brother, Nick, living in Boston. More than three decades before, her mother fled her marriage to mobster Paul Merritta. Before leaving she had to make a wrenching decision -- which one of her twins to leave behind. She chose Samantha (then named Nicole) and left her son Nicholas with her husband. Eventually she settled in Arizona to start a new life with her daughter, new husband and new identity.

When Samantha is summoned by her biological father Paul Merritta and learns that he's dying, she goes against her mother's wishes and travels to Boston to meet with him. She also wants to meets her brother, who's as stunned as she is by this sudden and surprising turn of events. But while Sam loves the idea of having a brother, Nick isn't as enthusiastic. Indeed, he warns her repeatedly to leave Boston and go back home to Arizona -- certain family members aren't pleased to learn of her existence. His warning is barely spoken when Paul Merritta dies unexpectedly and the murder attempts begin.

As a young boy Nathan MacLean watched in horror when his mother was gunned down by the Merrittas after overhearing dangerous information. Now an FBI agent, MacLean has made it his mission to bring down the Merritta family. He's been dogging Nick for years, certain the younger Merritta used mob money to set himself up in business. Sparks fly when MacLean and Samantha meet after another attempt on her life. Soon the two of them are on the run from Merritta insiders, who are determined to see Samantha dead and even more determined to keep dangerous secrets from the past well hidden.

The always versatile Potter offers up another competently written romantic suspense with two very likeable leads, interesting plot twists and a nicely developed love story between Nathan and Samantha. The middle of the book tends to bog down a bit with redundant dialogue, but once the action moves back to Steamboat Springs, the hunt for Samantha's missing mother and ultimately their search for the truth about the Merritta family, brings Twisted Shadows to a satisfying conclusion.

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