Abby Foster is not quite the typical damaged woman, but she does have the standard trust issues. Without giving away important plot twists, she’s been hurt by a few important men in her life and it’s led her to sleeping with lights on and moving to a new town where she can start over completely. She Can Hide isn’t a simple tale about a broken heart that needs to mend. Abby was kidnapped three years earlier and is not remotely over it when this book begins.
You walk into the story when Abby wakes up in a sinking car. So it starts off full of drama and tension. And you stay at a pretty high-tension state for most of the book. Fortunately for her, Officer Ethan Hale is nearby and comes to her rescue. Though, to be fair, she did a great deal of her own rescuing before he showed up. Since it’s pretty clear early on that she wasn’t trying to take her own life, Ethan becomes a solid fixture in her life for the investigation.
Abby and Ethan experience some strong feelings from the start, and they don’t take very long to act on them. There aren’t many steamy scenes since it’s a lot about finding killers and saving lives, but the scenes Leigh included are sweet and more about love than passion. With someone constantly trying to kill Abby, their emotions are already running high and it doesn’t take much to push them into the love category.
But this story isn’t all about bad guys and Abby getting over trust issues. There’s a kid, Derek, who lives next door to Abby and is struggling with his own problems. He’s drawn to Abby because she’s obviously been through a lot too and she doesn’t treat him like other adults do. He takes on a much bigger role than I expected and I really love how his story ends here. His character highlights how similar adults and kids are, and how resilient we can be. There’s also Abby’s father who is working on being a better man (and you’ll see he has a lot to overcome!). So we have three generations of people who are taking very different approaches to the same goal. It adds a lot of depth to what might otherwise have been the standard damsel-in-distress story.
This damsel, though, is a tough cookie that is right beside Ethan while he hunts for the person trying to kill her. The plot moves pretty quickly from bad guy to bad guy as they work their way up the criminal food chain.
I’m giving “She Can Hide” 4 Whatzits mainly because I feel the ultimate baddie is a little too predictable for my taste. If Leigh hadn’t tried so hard to add in some mystery, it probably would have been more of a surprise at the end. But the story itself was a great ride.
This is the first book of hers I’ve read, but I think I’ll be reading others. She creates strong characters that are easy to get invested in and her story kept the adrenaline pumping which is what I was hoping for.