Ivy, Mar 2003, 6.99
For the past decade, forensic anthropologist Timothy John “TJ” McCloud has traveled the world visiting hot spots as a consultant. Currently, TJ rests on the property of his sister-in-law on an island off the South Carolina coast. TJ is studying the remains of two individuals found on the beach when a storm struck. He estimates the two men died during World War II.
Hollywood executive Mara Simon hopes to save her movie company with an on location pirate's film. The problem is that her access to the beach is blocked by the investigation conducted by TJ. She hopes she can charm the man that she knew as her first love back in a Long Island high school and who knew her as Patsy Simonetti. As “Timid Tim” and Patsy fall in love, his connection to Army Colonel Martin places him under suspicion of abetting war criminals and her ex-husband Sid Rosenthal makes a bid to cut her out of the movie industry.
Though there is too much secondary clutter, fans of contemporary romance will gain much pleasure from this tale that mostly focuses on the battle between the lead couple. The story line engages the audience especially when TJ and Mara squabble. Adding critical pivotal point to the story is the suicide of Patsy's brother years ago, which helped shape their personalities and ended their teen relationship. Her challenge from her ex-husband and his trouble with the military add suspense yet take the audience away from the war of the sexes that make Patricia Rice's novel fun to read.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner