by Bruce TierneyNovember 2006
End of a marriage
Perri O'Shaughnessy, the pen name for the sister team (Pamela and Mary O'Shaughnessy) that turns out the critically acclaimed Nina Reilly series, is back with a stand-alone suspense novel titled Keeper of the Keys. Architect Ray Jackson, by most measures, has a storybook life: a cool job with a trendy L.A. architectural firm, a beautiful wife, a lovely home in tony Topanga Canyon. But all that is about to change. When he arrives home one evening, his wife Leigh has disappeared; there is no note, no phone call, nada. Ray is worried, but not inordinately so, at least not at first. The two had had a bitter argument after Ray discovered that Leigh had been having an affair with Ray's business partner, so if Leigh wanted to be somewhere else, well, that was fine with Ray. Leigh's father, however, is a cop, and he wants to know where his daughter has gone; Leigh's girlhood friend Kat has some questions about Leigh's disappearance as well. Both of them suspect that Ray has done something awful, perhaps something deadly, to Leigh. And so the noose begins to tighten. Reluctantly, Ray Jackson embarks on a search for his missing wife. What he finds will change his life, and the lives of those close to him, forever. On the minus side: the characters are not as involving as those in O'Shaughnessy's well-received Nina Reilly series, and the plot is a bit contrived. On the plus side: There are some slick twists, and the ending is quite a surprise; even hardcore fans will likely not tip to it much before the author intends.