LADY IN THE MIST
Summary: Upon her arrival in Shoal Harbor, Maine, Lily Jackson hears eerie moans that the locals claim are the ghostly cries of the unfortunate Breckenridge women. Running from loss and setback in Cincinnati, Lily needs the job as semi-psychiatric caregiver for Andrew Breckenridge, but the storm she has to weather from the oldest Breckenridge brother is severe. Clinton Breckenridge is a brooding man used to getting his own way, and he’s not convinced Lily is the right person to help his troubled younger brother.
Even as Lily starts picking up the pieces of Andrew’s tortured psyche and finding out his dark secrets, another mystery looms before her. Andrew’s lover has gone missing in recent months and no one knows what has happened to her, or if her voice has joined those of the other Breckenridge women. Before she knows it, Lily finds herself in danger—thrust directly into the eye of the raging storm.
If you love a good, old-fashioned gothic romance, you need look no further than Lady in the Mist, a novella written by Winter Frost. Frost, a pseudonym for the writing team of Alicia Dean and Mel Odom, took me back to the days when the gothic romance ruled the genre. There’s murder and intrigue, fog and cliffs, moans on the wind, and of course a dark, angry, mysterious hero to go with the unsuspecting heroine.
We meet our heroine Lily Jackson when she takes a job in Shoal Harbor, Maine as a therapist for Drew Breckenridge. Before she even sets foot in town, she receives a dire warning regarding her new employers and her (and our) adventure starts. She soon meets both Breckenridge brothers, the damaged, yet friendly Drew and an angry, closed off Clinton who appears to hate Lily before she can say hello. Though uncomfortable with her first impression of the brothers and skeptical after the warning she received earlier, Lily has reasons of her own for being in Maine, so she chooses to stay and quickly finds herself caught up in the mystery surrounding Breckenridge Manor, Drew, and Clinton.
At 90 pages, Lady in the Mist is a quick read and I enjoyed each and every page. Frost’s descriptions are vivid and sharp. She doesn’t waste time or words as the plot moves along smoothly and cleanly with no clear editing issues. Despite their unpleasant first meeting (and second, third, & fourth), there is great chemistry between Lily and Clinton and a delightful friendship that develops between Drew and Lily. The manor house is cavernous and has a sense of doom about it, and the doom appears to extend to the town of Shoal Harbor despite the fact that it’s meant to be a picturesque, New England vacation spot. The mystery surrounding both the death of Drew and Clinton’s mother and the disappearance of Drew’s girlfriend maintains a nice level of suspense, enough to keep the reader on the edge of their seat. Like I said, pure, fun, gothic romance.
I definitely recommend Lady in the Mist!
You can purchase the Nook edition here at Barnes & Noble.