Harlequin, Aug 2004, 16.95, 304 pp.
In Jacobsville, Texas police chief Cash Grier goes to New York to see Tippy “Georgia Firefly” Moore, the famous model turned actor. Cash and Tippy recently met in his hometown (see LAWLESS) but Tippy has mixed feelings about the lawman who wants to see her because she is very attracted to him, but fears intimacy since her stepfather raped her as a teen while her drugged out mom did nothing. In fact once she escaped she rescued her abused younger brother nine year old Rory although their “parents” use him to blackmail her for drug money.
Cash picks up Rory at his Maryland military school and takes him to his sister in the East Village. The attraction between Cash and Tippy could ignite Manhattan, but both remain wary as neither trust easily; she due to her stepfather and he due to his former fiancée's rejection in which she labeled him a cold killer after telling her about his military black ops work. However, druggies linked to her stepfather target Tippy and Rory as easy money, but they failed to factor in Cash, who loves both of them.
This romantic suspense is more of a character study of two walking wounded rather than the police procedural love story of LAWLESS. Tippy and Cash have issues involving trust and intimacy as both have been hammered by the darkest side of humanity. Rory is a terrific “matchmaker” although his adjustments seem too easy. The “parents” are poster adults for why having children needs licensing more than marriage between two consenting adults. RENEGADE is a deep look at the healing power of love.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner