Near You (Montana Series Book 2)

Mary Burton

Montlake Pub

April 13th, 2021

Near You by Mary Burton is a chilling and gripping read. Readers are drawn in with every clue. Making it even more interesting is how the story is told with multiple points of view. 

“As I was writing the first book, Burn You Twice, I was not sure if he was going to be the bad guy or the good guy.  He surprised me because of his brilliance.  Now we find he has been wrongly accused, but there might be a little darkness in him.  Who knows what he is up to?  I enjoy writing characters that have some lightness and darkness in them. Joan is another character like that although she has great intentions and is a good person, but she has her own secrets.”

Although it is not necessary, people might want to read the first book in this series, Burn you Twice, to get more of a background. The story centers around Joan Mason and detective Gideon Bailey. It shows how twelve years ago, Ann Bailey and Joan Mason were best friends in the first year of college when an arsonist set their house on fire and they barely escaped with their lives. Elijah Weston was accused and convicted of the crime. After serving ten years, he was found innocent and was released. 

In this story Dr. Ann Bailey and Montana Highway Patrol Officer Bryce McCabe decide to work together to solve some gruesome murders, where women have their faces scalped and then burned. Ann’s background as a forensic psychologist is put to use.  Through the investigation they find the murders are tied to Elijah’s groupies while he was in jail.  They are known as the “Fireflies.” They go on a quest to find the killer before others die, including the possibility of Ann being accosted.

“I wanted Ann to be as brilliant as Elijah. She is also independent, and fragile.  She also has secrets lurking in her past that follows her through her life.  She will do anything to protect her son.  She gives off a veneer of being tough.  She is trying to give her son Nate a smooth and calm life. Ann always does what she needs to do. Bryce compliments her by being protective, a steady guy, a solid lawman who knows what he wants.  He was in the Marines for fourteen years.”

There is a military dog angel that is very similar to Mike Ritland who started Warrior Dog Foundation seems to be doing in real life what Bryce’s brother is doing in the book. “I saw someone on You-Tube that took in military dogs. They are trained and some are not adoptable.  Military and police dogs can retire with dignity.  It takes someone who knows these dogs to be able to take care of them.  They deserve goodness for the rest of their lives.  This way they get a good life.  The right person makes all the difference.  It is a true commitment to have these dogs in their lives.”

What makes the book even more compelling is the relationship between Ann and Bryce, Ann and Elijah, and Ann and her son, Nate. 

“Ann and Elijah had a relationship that was pure emotion and desire, very short-lived.  It was like a fire that burned hot and then quickly extinguished. Ann embraced the edginess of Elijah at a time when she was questioning her life.  With Bryce, Ann has grown up.  They have a passionate desire, but it is long term and not a flash like it was with Elijah who was preoccupied, infatuated, and obsessed with Ann.  Bryce knows Elijah will always be around. Ann is also very protective of her son.”

This book is the perfect blend of tension and suspense. Burton readers should expect nothing else from her stories, including being drawn into the character’s lives.



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About the Author

Elise Cooper

Elise writes book reviews that always include a short author interview.