Date Published: February 28, 2017
Publisher: Limitless Publishing
Laney Pearson was shot at point blank range…
With the help of his friend and colleague, Dr. Nathan George, Josh Stone managed to save her, giving them both a new start and a second chance at love. But when Laney’s parents try to take their recovering daughter back to Missouri, Josh fears he’ll lose her…possibly forever.
A mysterious stalker and Laney’s family aren’t the only ones who want Josh and Laney apart…
Jillian Stone has struggled with her own demons, always leaning on her brother Josh for support. When she sees him doting on Laney, spending days on end by her hospital bed, Jillian grows increasingly jealous. She pictures a life where Laney is gone and she and Josh can be closer… much closer.
A familiar shadow still threatens the light…
They thought Laney’s stalker was completely erased from their lives, arrested when he tried to kill her. But they find it wasn’t Laney’s ex-boyfriend who tormented her for weeks on end, even if he was the one who pulled the trigger. They are now on the lookout for the real stalker, who becomes braver with each passing day, always in shadows, never creeping into the light…
They fear he might be back to finish what he started… sending Laney to an early grave.
Dr. Josh Stone stood helpless as Laney, seemingly in slow motion, fell to the floor. The thud of her body hitting the tiles shot goose bumps through his flesh. For a brief moment, he was paralyzed. His girlfriend, also a trauma nurse, had been shot by the patient they had been taking care of. The sight of the man sitting up and grabbing Officer Miller’s gun from his holster replayed in Josh’s brain. The man pointed it at Laney and shot her several times before anyone was able to subdue him. Now, Josh stood helplessly as she lay motionless on the floor. How could this happen in his trauma room? Why couldn’t he protect Laney? His knees seemed to buckle as he sank to Laney’s side, stethoscope dangling from his neck.
Laney’s curly blonde hair covered much of her face, but it was clear she was unconscious. Josh gently shook her, hoping for the slightest response. There was none. She had been shot in the chest.
Someone shrieked. One of the ER nurses, Dinah, looked shocked, both hands covering her mouth. She pointed to the floor. A puddle of blood oozed from under Laney. His nose wrinkled from the metallic aroma.
Josh fought the anger raging inside him. He wanted to make the son-of-a-bitch who shot Laney pay for hurting her.
For now, he had to let the cops handle it. Josh took a deep breath and struggled to regain his composure, but failed miserably.
“My God! Laney! How could this happen?” His face was hot. He swiped at it with his blood-soaked hands and realized he was crying.
“Dr. Stone! Dr. Stone!”
Josh looked up. Dinah’s lips were moving, but her words weren’t computing. A couple of techs and nurses eased Laney from his arms. Not only did he feel the emptiness, but it also plagued his heart and his soul.
Josh helped lift Laney onto a gurney. Dinah placed her hand on his shoulder. “You need to help her. She needs you now more than ever.”
Dinah put her cold hands on Josh’s flushed face. “Dr. Stone, I know you’re in shock, but you need to focus. You’re the only one who can save her.”
Josh turned his head, causing the frigid hands to fall from his face. He rubbed his swollen eyes and surveyed the room. The devastation was beyond words. Officer Miller had the man who shot Laney subdued in handcuffs. He lay on the table with his disheveled hair covering his face. Someone must have sedated him because he wasn’t moving. Equipment had been knocked over and supplies thrown everywhere. Josh’s heart rate sped up as he cast his eyes down at the pool of blood surrounding his feet.
“Where is she?”
“They’ve taken her to the OR to get her prepped. You need to get down there right now. Dr. Nessler is coming in to finish up with this guy.”
Josh darted out of the room with an urgency he never felt before. With each step he took, his pace quickened until he was in a full sprint to the OR.
When Josh arrived, the anesthesiologist already had Laney intubated and sedated and was inserting a central line. The nurses had just finished putting in peripheral IVs.
“Hang two units of O positive PRBC’s. Tell the blood bank to have more on standby. She will need them.”
“Are you sure you want O positive and not O negative?” questioned Sandra, the OR nurse.
“Yes! Laney is O positive!” Josh barked.
He rushed to Laney. He took a step back seeing her naked body lying lifeless on the table. Blood still seeped from the bullet wounds. He took a deep breath, steadied himself, and promptly got to work.
“Has anyone called the cardiothoracic surgeon?”
“Yes, he’s been called,” Sandra stated.
“Who’s on call today?” Josh mentally crossed his fingers it was his friend Nathan.
“It’s Dr. George. He should be here any minute.”
Josh sighed. “Thank God. Have chest x-rays been performed?”
“Yes, we also did a CT of her abdomen. There were two bullets that landed there. One hit the large intestine. The other looks as though it may have grazed the liver. There doesn’t appear to be any bleeding, so it may not have been hit. A bullet also went through the right lower lobe of her lung. The worst of the injuries is her heart. She took a direct hit to her left ventricle. She’s losing a lot of blood. I have everything set up when you’re ready to go, Dr. Stone.”
“Let’s get her chest cracked. We can’t waste a moment. Dr. George will start to work as soon as he gets here.”
One of the techs handed Josh a scalpel. He made an incision straight down the center of Laney’s chest to her abdomen. They would need the entire area to work. Once the incision was made, the tech handed Josh the saw. He carefully cut down the middle of the sternum. The sound of metal against bone was raw like Josh’s emotions. It was surreal to know it was Laney.
Josh pulled apart Laney’s sternum and held it open with a sternal retractor.
“Dr. Stone, what is it?” the nurse asked.
“The bullet went through her ventricle.” Oh my God, she’s not going to make it. Josh stared at Laney’s heart losing blood at an alarming rate. If something wasn’t done fast, she would bleed out.
Oh.My.Word! Yes, a new to me author that knocked my socks off. Just wow! I don’t think I’ve ever read a romantic medical thriller like this one. I was gripped from the first page and finally, in the end, let out my breath. Once I started reading, I didn’t stop. The flow, the writing, the characters, romance, and suspense were all top notch.
I’m used to reading the standard romantic suspense/thriller where the hero is some kind of law enforcement and the heroine is almost TSTL but what I got in this one were medical professionals that were smart, giving and loving. Just re-read the excerpt above and you will understand a little bit about what I’m saying. Josh is beyond awesome. In love with Laney but also very fearful of her safety. Not totally alpha but once she is hot, he fears that he will lose her forever.
Laney, my poor Laney. Getting shot, having overbearing parents, a stalker that just won’t quit and did I mention Josh’s sister, Jillian? Pyscho at best. I loved how this is somewhat a second chance romance but in reality, it’s not. I didn’t read the first book and in some ways, you should read it first. It explains a lot about the events leading up to Laney getting shot and how Josh and Laney got together in the first place. Did I feel lost? No, but I’m that reader that once I fall in love with the characters in the second book, I HAVE to read the first one. He He!
The suspense in the book, again, is top notch. I couldn’t breathe in some parts and Ms. Sumner, being a nurse, let me feel all the action in the hospital. The hospital scenes were like watching a good medical drama of yesteryear…ER came to mind. The villains are heinous and you will hate them with a passion. Even Laney’s parents got on my nerves at times. I actually told my Kindle that Laney is a grown ass woman…leave her alone.
Overall, I highly, highly recommend this book. It’s a keeper on the shelf, as will the first book, too.
JG can often be found with a glass of red wine or prosecco in front of her computer. When she’s not creating, she enjoys the outdoors hiking, bike riding, snowboarding, and camping.
JG has a very dry sense of humor, and should never be taken too seriously. She loves to hear from her fans, and even those who aren’t and would love to hear your opinion on her books.
JG writes romantic suspense/thrillers including: A Shot in the Dark, Into the Light, The Surrender Trilogy including Surrender, Shattered, and Saved which will be available through Limitless Publishing soon.
Website: Website domain in process