If dead bodies are your pleasure, here's a gritty and intensely romantic thriller called Cut Throat, by Sharon Sala, which centers on the fierce and aloof Cat Dupree. Cat is a woman with a mission to find and kill her father's murderer, a man who left Cat with a slit throat and a legacy of vengeance. Though she thought she killed the tattooed monster, bounty hunter Cat suddenly realizes he's still alive and on the loose in Mexico. Knowing she will never rest as long as he lives, Cat sets out to track him down, leaving behind her sometime lover Wilson McKay, who has discovered he loves the troubled woman. New York Times best-selling author Sala (aka Dinah McCall) has won legions of fans by delving deeply into the heart of her often tortured characters to deliver intense tales of redemption. Cut Throat offers insight into the dynamics of loss and recovery as Cat makes her way from the dark of revenge into the light of possibility, encountering scorpions and dead bodies and a monster along the way. Elegant, compassionate glimpses of Mexican characters add a supple richness to this wildly romantic story.

Barbara Samuel's next novel will be out from Bantam in 2008. Read her opinions on travel and books at awriterafoot.com.

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