By Rachel Lizotte, 15, John Burroughs HS
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In the novel Wild Orchids, Ford Newcombe, a famous author, is an isolated, middle-aged widower still mourning his wife, who died many years ago of cancer. Ford meets a woman named Jackie Maxwell, who recently left her fiancé at their wedding after he told her that he lost all their money.

Ford, who hasn’t written in years, dating back even before his wife died, has just moved to a small town to escape his past. He meets Jackie at a party during which Jackie tells a harrowing ghost story about a woman who has rocks piled on her, inspiring Ford to learn more about the story. He hires her as his assistant to help him find the town in which the story took place and to find out what happened to the woman from the story.

But the townspeople don’t want Ford to know anything, and they act evasive when Jackie and Ford ask them questions. Soon Jackie starts to have visions about brutal deaths, and Ford and Jackie start to wonder if the townspeople will turn against them, too.

This book was a great read for all of you mystery lovers and closet romantics. Jude Deveraux wrote this book elegantly with characters I could relate to and great descriptions of places. I never got bored. This book shows both characters dealing with their pasts, Ford reluctantly, and Jackie willingly. You’ll keep thinking, what’s going to happen next? And you’ll wonder if Ford will ever get over his deceased wife and move on to someone else.