The Cove


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Title: The Cove

Author: Catherine Coulter

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Publication Date: 1996

Number of Pages: 327

Geographical Setting: Cove, Oregon

Time Period: Present day

Series: Yes, the FBI series

Plot Summary:  Sally St. John is on the run–from an FBI agent, from her husband, and from her psychiatrist. She has recently escaped from a mental facility where she was institutionalized for killing her abusive father, a high-powered corporate attorney. Sally flees to The Cove, a small town in Oregon where she takes refuge with her eccentric Aunt Amabel. Tension runs high in this page-turner, as Sally frantically works to get her memory back, and to find out what really happened the night of her father’s murder. Ms. Coulter has written a suspenseful novel full of unexpected events, creepy characters, and a small town reminiscent of Twin Peaks, Washington.

Subject Headings: Women murder suspects; FBI agents; Emotional abuse; Physical abuse; Protectiveness in men; Murder investigation; Fathers–Death.

Appeal:  Fast-paced, action-oriented, plot twists, dangerous, edgy, engrossing, psychological, strong second characters, romantic, suspenseful, contemporary, small-town

Three Words or Phrases Best Describing this Book:  Fast-paced, suspenseful, plot twists

Relevant Non-Fiction Works and Authors:

Memory and Amnesia: An Introduction by Alan J. Parkin is an easy-to-read, somewhat humorous introduction to this mental condition.

Refusing Treatment in Mental Health Institutions-Values in Conflict is an examination of patient’s rights and mental health laws of various states by A. Edward Doudera and Judith P. Swazey.

“Not to People Like Us:” Hidden Abuse in Upscale Marriages by psychotherapist Susan Weitzman explores the culture of spousal abuse in affluent society.

Relevant Fiction Works and Authors:

Lisa Gardner’s The Other Daughter provides themes of ugly family secrets and a romantic relationship with an FBI Agent.

See Jane Run by Joy Fielding is a novel of a woman suffering from amnesia who is being gaslighted by her husband.

Secrets of a Small Town: Small Town Mayhem by Jean Buonanno features a small Baptist town named Palm Cove where things are not as tranquil as they seem.

Jane Bessette

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