Storm Warning

Storm Warning - Toni Anderson After watching his best friend and partner die in what can only be described as a tense, action packed and bloody shoot out with a Columbian drug lord and his henchmen, DEA agent Ben Foley traces a lead to the town of Anstruther situated on the craggy storm tossed coast of Scotland. Ben is a man out for vengeance, he has taken down the Columbian drug cartel but is determined to cut off the trafficker who he believes exposed his partner during the final moments of their undercover sting operation. He therefore heads to the coast of Scotland and Sorcha Logan, his prime suspect. However, in doing this he also has to face his greatest fear.

When Sorcha was 10 years old her beloved father was drowned at sea, the circumstances surrounding his death remain somewhat of a mystery. Rumors spread that she had cursed her father which lead to an accusation of witchery and resulted in a horrific attempt on Sorcha’s life. Sorcha’s grandmother sent her to the less then welcoming arms of her mother who had left the family years earlier. Sorcha, now a graduate student, has returned to her home and the local university to complete her doctoral studies and thesis. After being badly hurt by her previous boyfriend, Sorcha isn’t keen to become involved with the mysterious and enigmatic American who walks into her life one night when she finds a body that has washed up on the shoreline of a stormy sea. You see Sorcha Logan is psychically gifted, she doesn’t understand her gifts, only that she hears voices that alert and guide her. Further she is haunted by the ghost of her father who seems to be trying to communicate something of great importance to her.

“Sorcha screamed. She didn’t mean to, couldn’t help the screech that escaped her lips.

“Take it easy.” A stranger stood nearby, holding up his hands, fingers spread wide in a nonthreatening gesture. Black eyes stared at her from a harsh face, spray or perspiration beading his forehead. His lips were compressed into a thin red line and a muscle ticked in his jaw.

There was no compassion in his gaze, no relief to be found in his presence. A shudder ran through her as the wind cut through her wet clothes to penetrate her skin, only it wasn’t the temperature that made her shake. The guy was about as friendly as razor wire.

“Do you know him?” The man, an American by his accent, shouted above the roar of wind and water.

Sorcha looked down at the man at her feet—the undoubtedly dead man at her feet.
Lord, I should recognize a corpse.

She shook her head. She’d never seen the young man before.”

Storm Warning © Toni Anderson

Ben rents a little cottage close to Sorcha’s so he can keep her under surveillance and gather evidence against the woman he believes is a drug trafficker and involved in the murder of his friend, Jacob. However as Ben gets to know Sorcha something tells him she is innocent of what she is suspected. On the other hand evidence mounts pointing to her culpability in the crime. He struggles with his duty to avenge Jacob’s death and his growing attraction to Sorcha Logan. Ms. Anderson pens a narrative that is rife with sexual tension and conflict. Ben is on assignment, he has a job to do and an obligation to his friend to see it through. Sorcha believes that she may be going mad because her psychic experiences are increasing. Further, both these people have significant commitment, and trust issues, not to mention Ben is deceiving her. I really liked how Ben stuggles with his feelings for Sorcha and there is a tension filled build up to the time when they actually do become lovers. And Ben? Definitely very fine. ;)

There is a well developed cast of secondary characters in this story including a deranged sociopath whose cruel violent acts escalate in savagery. Readers don’t know who he is only that he is manipulating those around him through brief scenes told from his warped point of view. I had no clue as to who the bad guys were until the frightening, suspenseful and action packed climax.

My only niggle with “Storm Warning” was that Sorcha seemed to get beat up an awful lot, but recovered very quickly and was none the worse for wear. Overall, though I enjoyed “Storm Warning”, very much. Ms. Anderson writes a well plotted story, with a crisp prose that flowed extremely well through to it’s exciting conclusion. The dark and stormy coast of Scotland was the perfect setting as it added a chilling sense of foreboding to the narrative.

If you enjoy a fast paced, romantic suspense story, laced with mystery and psychic phenomenon that made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end, you may like to give “Storm Warning” a try.