Deadly Affairs, by Brenda Joyce

Cover ImageFinished 1-29-10, rating 4.5/5, romance, pub. 2002

Book 3 in the Deadly series (Book 1 review) (Book 2 review)

Things are heating up for Francesca and the married, but informally separated police commissioner, Rick Bragg.  They are barely fighting their attraction to each other, there is a murderer on the loose and, of course, Francesca is vital to the investigation.  Two women have been brutally slain and Joel’s mother, Maggie, is in grave danger.  Francesca’s mother agrees to let Maggie and her four children move into the mansion, but only if Francesca agrees to be set up by her mother.  Calder, Rick’s cad of a brother, is the intended target of this matchmaking and Rick doesn’t like it.  Francesca’s sister is having her own man troubles after confronting her husband over an affair with a neighbor. 

There is romance, mystery and a wonderful sense of New York City in 1902.  The mystery was solid and it wasn’t until all was revealed that it made complete sense, which is a good thing!  And while I like Rick, he does have a wife and in 1902 he is really bringing scandal on Francesca by continuing to encourage her.  They are perfectly suited, but he is not available.  That is the interest in this series for me because it is so true to life.  Sometimes there is just no perfect choice and the journey to making a decision reveals so much about your character.

There is so much to like about this series, but I will say the same thing I said last week about the heavy-handed way men sometimes act toward the women, if it bothers you, read something else.  And you really do want to read this series in order.

This book came from my personal library.