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LINE OF FIREDr. Gregory is starting to feel settled, hopeful that a long period of upheaval in his private life is behind him. He refocuses his energy on his clinical psychology practice, where a beguiling new patient captivates him, but the interlude of calm doesn’t last. Devastating fires are threatening Boulder. Alan’s dear friend Diane is showing signs of a long-simmering emotional collapse. And Alan’s most pressing fear — the exposure of a dangerous secret — has become a peril too real to ignore. A new witness has surfaced, causing the police to reopen their investigation into the suicide of a woman named Justine Winter Brown. When Alan and his equally culpable friend, Sam Purdy, inadvertently disclose their involvement in her death to a stranger, any confidence they feel about riding out a renewed investigation evaporates. The trail that leads to Alan and Sam, once cold, has turned white-hot. With his vulnerability mounting daily, Alan suspects that his mesmerizing new patient may be the catalyst that could cause everything he treasures — his marriage, his family, his friendships, and his future — to implode. As flames lick at the city, the story hurtles toward a shocking conclusion that leaves the stage set for a jaw-dropping last act — the upcoming final book in the two-decades-long Alan Gregory saga.
COMPOUND FRACTURESIn Line of Fire, Dr. Gregory found himself assailed by danger from every direction as he struggled with circumstances beyond his control. Authorities were closing in on Alan and his friend Sam Purdy for their roles in a woman’s death years earlier. Alan was struggling to deal with the emotional breakdown of his longtime friend Diane after she discovered evidence of her husband’s infidelity. By the end, Alan’s personal life and his career were in danger of complete collapse. But Line of Fire merely set the stage. In Compound Fractures, Alan is forced to acknowledge that the perils that may bring him to his knees are not the dangers he recognizes, nor are they orchestrated by the nemesis he has long feared. Instead he is confronted by unexpected threats from unanticipated adversaries and by intimate betrayal from those who have been closest to him. He is compelled to reconsider what he has long believed about trust and about love while he is trying to cope with overwhelming loss and grief. To protect himself, Alan must revisit the cruel ethical dilemma that turned his life upside down as a young psychologist. He has to judge whether the people reentering his life after long absences are friends or foes. He has to make sense of echoes of distant tragedies while he decides if there is anyone he can really trust. And as the clock ticks down, he must solve a deadly mystery in Eldorado Springs that has been brewing for more than a decade.