When Zach Cooper, the provost marshal of the Union forces occupying New Orleans in 1862, meets Emmanuelle de Bourdonnay in the course of a murder investigation, he is attracted to the beautiful widow only to discover that she withholds the truth from him, if not her body, even as those close to her continue to die. Despite her anti-Yankee feelings and grudgingly revealed secrets, Zach comes to love her, fears for her safety, ignores his suspicions that she should be a suspect, and single-mindedly pursues his investigation of those who have been involved with Emmanuelle and her work at the Hospital de Santerre. Although this is a superbly suspenseful historical romance, the book's real appeal is its mood, for which Proctor has an obvious gift. The reader actually feels weighed down by the heat, humidity, despair, corruption, superstition, sense of foreboding, and hatreds of old New Orleans. Even knowing that the two lovers will commit to each other doesn't lessen the drama leading up to the exciting--and to some extent surprising--ending. Mary K. Chelton
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Good mystery set in New Orleans during the Civil War, along with some romance thrown in it makes for an interesting read.