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Heartbreaker Mass Market Paperback – May 31, 2011

4.2 out of 5 stars 442 customer reviews

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In the Clearing
When hunting a killer, no case is closed for homicide detective Tracy Crosswhite. Learn More
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Setting: Holy Oaks, Iowa, present day
Sensuality rating: 4

New York Times bestselling author Julie Garwood breaks new ground in her first contemporary suspense novel. Long-time fans of Garwood will be amazed at the way the queen of historical romance weaves this tale of love as it blossoms in the face of extreme danger. FBI agent Nick Buchanan is about to take his first vacation in three years when he receives a phone call from his best friend and former college roommate, Father Tom Madden. Tom relates the horrifying tale of a confession that he heard from a killer seeking absolution for a gruesome crime he has yet to commit. Worse yet, the madman, who calls himself the Heartbreaker, confesses that his intended victim is Laurant Madden, Tom's gorgeous younger sister. The Heartbreaker is crazy about Laurant--really, really crazy.

When Tom and Nick break the news to Laurant, she is furious at the disruption the psycho is causing in her very busy life. With her best friend's wedding rapidly approaching and Laurant's own business set to open in two weeks, there couldn't be a worse time to be stalked. But when she learns that the Heartbreaker has already broken into her home and watched her sleep, she reluctantly agrees to Nick's protection, even if it means that she's thrown together with her brother's all-too-sexy friend all day--and all night. Nick, posing as Laurant's fiancé, heads back with her to Holy Oaks. There he encounters a strange cast of characters, the likes of which are grown only in small towns where everybody knows everybody's business--except whether one of them might be a serial killer. Along the way, Nick and Laurant also discover their own hunger for each other. Readers will love the change of pace for perennial favorite Garwood. She creates a sensational story with a truly explosive conclusion. --Alison Trinkle --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

"Bless me Father, for I will sin." In her first contemporary suspense thriller, Garwood, better known for best-selling romantic fiction (Ransom; the Clayborne Brides trilogy; etc.), explodes out the narrative gate, but delivers more romance than suspense. While waiting for test results to determine if he needs another round of chemotherapy, Father Thomas Madden is the guest of Monsignor McKindry at Our Lady of Mercy Church in Kansas City. He offers to sit in for McKindry in the confessional. When a mocking voice seeks the good father's prayers to prevent him from murdering the priest's own sister, Laurant Madden, panic quickly sets in. The faceless voice behind the screen admits to a previous murder and also knows about Father Tommy's cancer. Tommy quickly calls FBI agent Nicholas Buchanan (Tommy's best friend since childhood) and asks him to track down the madman and protect his sister. Laurant has never met Nick before, but is instantly attracted to him. The two fake falling in love to flush out the murderer, but the pretense is short-lived. Some members of the chorus provide amusing turnsAmost notably outspoken elderly sisters Bessie Jean and Viola Vanderman, who serve up casseroles and counsel safe sex. Garwood's writing is strongest where affairs of the heart are concerned. If the thriller aspect of the novel fails to ignite, the sexual pas de deux between Nick and Laurant delivers sufficient smolder for Garwood's fans. Major ad/promo; 16-city author tour. (July)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; Reprint edition (May 31, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451648324
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451648324
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (442 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,999,304 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Julie Garwood's first contemporary chiller is a must read for any Garwood fan. Like many, I was sceptical and wondered if I would like this "new" type of book.
It's wonderful. Ms. Garwood stays true to her writing style with real life hero and heroine characters, along with her always perfect secondary characters. The suspense and tension is believable and scary, but there's humor, too. Nick's reactions when Laurent agrees with him after he tries to explain to her that she couldn't possibly love him, that it's just the situation they're in is hilarious - "Of course you don't love me.....what do you mean, you don't love me?". Vintage Garwood bantering and I just put the book down and laughed.
I also know I'm not alone in falling for Father Tom and Noah Clayborne (yes, Clayborne) and am hoping (demanding?) that Noah get his own book as soon as possible.
It's been rumored that each of the so-called FBI "Apostles", Noah among them, will be getting their own books, but for now, one of Nick's brothers is the next to get his own book. Theo? Please, please let Noah be next.
Anyway, run, do not walk to your bookstore / internet site to get this book. You WON'T be disappointed.
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Format: Hardcover
What? Julie Garwood's "Heartbreaker" is a contemporary romance/mystery? My words when I discovered my favorite writer was stepping out of the mold I associated with her of dark, brooding Earls and fair, fancy Ladies! My next sentence was a half-hearted....."Okay, I'll lay down my money and give it a shot". Thank goodness I did or I'd have missed out on my favorite Garwood book to date!
Her characters, Nick and Laurant jump at your from the pages...and fill your imagination with fanciful thoughts of actually knowing them along with Laurant's brother, Father Tom and the exciting Noah Clayborne (please let there be a book on Noah...please, please, please?).
Oh, did I mention the psycho that has designs on Larant....as his next victim? The plot is so intricatly woven by Garwood you'll drive yourself nuts trying to figure out who the "Heartbreaker" is. Great read! Can't wait for her next book....I'm betting it's a sequel to this one.
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Format: Hardcover
I'm a longtime fan of Julie Garwood's historicals. When I first read that her newest book was a Romantic Suspense novel, I was ready for disappointment. I just couldn't see how she could make the transition from very sweet and humorous to gritty and suspenseful. I was VERY surprised and pleased with the transition. Ms. Garwood has brilliantly plotted a suspense novel full of twists and turns that keeps the reader guessing until the very end. Even when you know who the killer really is, you have to figure out who he has become. At the same time Ms. Garwood has woven a very nice love story between Nick and Laurent. The tension from the suspense is relieved with classic Garwood one-liners that make you want to laugh. Secondary characters, such as Laurent's brother the priest and Nick's friend Noah, are well developed and add to lightening the dark side of the novel. All in all, a very good book from a favorite author. Hopefully she will write Noah's story next.....
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By A Customer on November 10, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed Heartbreaker, however, I did not feel it was in "Julie Garwood Style". I am a diehard fan of Ms. Garwood's. I own all of her books, and have read each one at least four times. I also read contemporary romance, however. My first love, though, is Ms. Garwood's historical romance. The one thing about her books that I have always loved is my ability to feel a part of the characters, that is why I am able to read them over and over again. My heart is with Jamie and Alec first and foremost, and I was hoping to feel the same about her new novel. I wasn't able to make the connection though. I thoroughly enjoy Ms. Garwood's style of writing, and was somewhat disappointed to read Heartbreaker because it reads very much like a Mary Higgins Clark novel. Not that that is an insult, she also happens to be one of my favorites. However, I read Garwood novels, and always eagerly await the next novel because she makes the reader feel a part of the story. I have cried over many of her novels. I just didn't feel that way with this novel. I truly feel that Ms. Garwood's forte is in the historical romance department. I not only enjoy reading her historical fiction, but I have picked up many historical facts from her books, which is like an added bonus. My hope is to see another novel, or two, in the line of Jamie and Alec! They are by far the best couple Ms. Garwood wrote about, and that book, The Bride (for those who are not as familiar), has been read more than 15 times and is looking a little worse for the wear. Sincerely, A devoted fan
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A murderer goes to confession asking for absolution for a crime he is going to commit. He chillingly describes how he tortured and killed his last victim. He challenges the priest to notify the authorities. The priest refuses to knowing the he can't reveal what is said in confession. The killer plays mind games with the priest letting him know he has already selected his next victim. This killing will be better, after all, practice makes perfect. The killer is convinced no one can stop him. He wants a challenge. He tells the priest to call his FBI friend to come and take the next victim into hiding. The killer will either follow or look for a new victim. He describes his next victim in such terms that the priest is shocked to realize it is his sister.
The priest, Tommy Madden, panics and calls in his childhood friend to protect his sister. Nick Buchanan belongs to an elite division of the FBI. He works in a specialized division called the "lost and found." His talent is in tracking the most difficult cases involving lost and abducted children. He comes to his old friend's aid by promising to take care of Laurant Madden. Laurant Madden takes matters into her own hands. She refuses to hide and instead taunts the killer into striking out at her. The FBI agree with what she is doing and provide around the clock protection for her. There are several secondary story lines that are interesting to go along with the plot.
I have always admired Julie Garwood's writing style. She generally has strong, independent heroines and dashing, brooding heros. I was excited to see her switch over to suspense. The synopsis I read had me hooked on this book long before it came out.
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