This time out, I have a new anthology to tide over Nora Roberts fans until the third book in her latest trilogy comes out later this month: Suite 606 (Berkley) has a short J. D. Robb tale in it, along with stories by Mary Blayney, Ruth Ryan Langan, and Mary Kay McComas. In 'Ritual in Death', Eve's saved from a party she's not loving by a bloody murder down the hall. The naked man who wanders into the swanky party is their only suspect, but he can't remember anything about what happened to the dead girl in Suite 606. Her investigation leads her into the land of the paranormal this time, and she's determined to make quick work of things. A terrific treat for Robb fans to savor between now and her February book. Blayney's 'Love Endures' has Summer Cassidy's late husband Reggie forced to hang around his London house as a ghost until he rights the wrongs he committed during his short and wasted lifetime. One of those wrongs might be to reunite Summer with his old friend Lord Stephen Bradley, whom Reggie separated years ago with a careless lie, but it won't be an easy task when neither can quite trust the other anymore. This one had a fair bit of humor in it, and I quite enjoyed it. 'Cold Case' by Langan has Sam Hunter stranded in a wicked winter storm with a beautiful young woman whose miserable stepfather has evil in mind. Watchful readers will know early on what's happening here, which may make for some disappointment during the reading. McComas's 'Wayward Wizard' has Marie Barnett trying to make amends with her son Hugh when they're whisked into the past to a wizard who's lost one of his most valuable and powerful tools. I will say I liked this one better than her contribution to last year's anthology, but it's not my favorite. Of the four, stories, the Robb is great, if only for the extra time we get to spend with Eve. Blayney's is my next favorite, with its humor to lighten things along the way, though it did seem to take Summer a little too long to figure out what Reggie had done. I was surprised not to like the Langan very much, because I usually enjoy her work, but something about this one put me off. For the first two stories, though this one's earned four of Cupid's five arrows.
Until next time, happy reading!