Pocket, Nov 2004
In Camp David, the FBI and Secret Service accuse Washington Post reporter Laurel Stewart of stealing papers from Vice President Aiken. Her paper's Managing Editor Lois Merryman fires Laurel for making up a story involving Aiken that the conscientious journalist cross checked with White House informants and a Department of Energy source. She wonders who wanted her out of the way and why.
Laurel's roommate Chloe Hollister is part of the Vice President's contingent heading to his hometown of Somersett, South Carolina for an annual festival. That afternoon Chloe calls from Somersett telling Laurel that she has an idea who set her up. She says she will call later as she cannot speak freely at this time. When Chloe fails to call, a worried Laurel rushes to Somersett to insure her friend is safe, but Chloe is missing. Laurel visits the police; homicide detective Joe Gannon listens to her story since he investigates the death of Sissy Beale, who might be Chloe. Laurel states the corpse is not her roommate. Over the next few days her friend's vanishing and the Sissy case interconnect even as Joe and Laurel fall in love.
The lead couple is a delightful pairing deserving of one another although Joe feels inadequate for having let down his former wife and their now deceased son.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner