Deceptions take on many guises in women's fiction misleading lovers and hunters alike. This month's selection of romance novels explores deception in diverse nuances.

A mysterious e-mail message delivered posthumously to Leonora Hutton sends her on a quest for the truth about the death of her dearest friend, Meredith Spooner, in Jayne Ann Krentz's fiery new suspense novel, Smoke in Mirrors. In the academic realm of Mirror House on the campus of Eubanks College, Leonora discovers that Meredith's death may not be the only one demanding investigation. Thomas Walker's sister-in-law also died mysteriously, and he joins Leonora to break through the fog of false identities and relationships. The old secrets of Mirror House, and one mirror in particular, hold the answers for Leonora and Thomas, if they can decipher them before losing their own lives.

Krentz is the unparalleled master of cozy suspense, dribbling in tidbits of education about her chosen environment mirrors in this tale while mercilessly ratcheting up the tension. Every convention of danger and passion is shattered into slivers reflecting an author in command of her story and telling it brilliantly.

Sandy Huseby writes and reviews from her homes in Fargo, North Dakota, and lakeside in northern Minnesota.

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