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Under Currents: A Novel by Nora Roberts

Reviewed by Allen Hott

To think that all of this happened in a small hill town in North Carolina makes you realize how great a writer Nora Roberts is. She follows various people in the town (mostly relatives of one another) as they go about their lives but the really good part is when she puts the reader into the shoes of those who suffered and some who actually died.

Begins with a wealthy family but the family is headed by a very strange rich man. He seems to enjoy sex with his wife (had several children) but seems as though he likes beating her physically more than he enjoys sex. And then she also tends to get into the fighting part as she fights back. Then together at various times they also beat their children. And that is their downfall!

They are arrested. She gets a fairly light sentence but he, because of the severity of the beatings and the continuity of them, gets a very severe sentence. His children move on with their lives and Zane, his son, becomes an attorney and stays close to his sister.

They have moved away to a small town where they are both moving along with their lives with the help of several extended relatives and also locals in the area. Zane does well in his profession and becomes close with the chief of police. Zane had always carried a baseball with him as he had played all of his life and had dreams of making it to the big leagues.

He also becomes friends (eventually very close) with a local lady. Darby. who is basically the top exterior/land designer in the area. Darby starts out doing work with shrubs and outdoor flowers but her talents are such that eventually she works into more of an interior designer but both inside and outside of people’s homes.

Darby had been married but after some fights of all types with her husband she divorced him, he ended up in jail and she moved. Her move put her in the middle of Zane’s little town .

The return of Zane’s father and later the return of Darby’s ex-husband are really the key events as the story draws to a close. Don’t forget the baseball in Zane’s pocket; it does come into play at the end of the story. The ending is about what one would expect and closes out a very good read by a good author.

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