The Last Time I Saw Her (Dr. Charlotte Stone, #4)by Karen Robards

Published August 25th 2015 by Ballantine Books

4.5 Stars

Synopsis: In the sizzling new novel from New York Times bestselling author Karen Robards, Dr. Charlie Stone must prove the innocence of a dangerously sexy condemned man, or lose her one chance at true love.
In this world, Dr. Charlotte “Charlie” Stone skillfully probes the twisted minds of incarcerated serial killers to better understand what makes them tick, and to help nab those who remain at large. But in the next world, Charlotte’s ghostly lover—convicted killer Michael Garland—is facing death yet again. It seem the only way Charlie can snatch Michael from the jaws of oblivion is by proving his innocence. And this dead man’s dead ringer may just be the key.
A mysterious stranger has turned up in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, and Charlie is shocked to realize he could be Michael Garland’s identical twin. But she suspects the resemblance is only skin deep—and that behind the handsome face may lurk the perverse mind of a killer. While using all her keen profiling gifts, Charlie risks her life to discover the shocking secret that will clear Michael’s name.
Then a breakout at Wallens Ridge State Prison forces Charlie to contend with a sudden swarm of psychopaths bent on spilling blood. No one has a better chance of tracking down the deadly fugitives than Charlie—unless the rampaging killers manage to find her first and make this case her last. But Michael will move heaven and hell—and even make a devil’s bargain—for the chance to save Charlie’s life, and feel her touch once more . . . if only for the final time.

My Review: This is the fourth book in the Dr. Charlotte Stone series. These books are part of a paranormal/romance/mystery/thriller series. Main character Dr. Charlotte Stone, studies serial killers a high security prison Wallens Ridge State Prison in Big Stone Gap, Virginia. She is also able to see and talk to ghosts/spirits of those who have died a violent death. If you have not read the previous books in the series I do not want to ruin it for you at this point. Suffice it to say, that she ends up falling for one of her subjects who may have been wrongly accused. When he gets killed in front of her, his spirit sticks around and is in each of the subsequent books.

When The Last Time I Saw Her starts, Charlie is in a bad way. At the end of the previous book the spirit of the man she loved gets sucked into what she calls, Spookyville. She does not think she will ever see him again and is grieving. When she meets a lawyer, who looks like Michael Garland’s twin, and is apparently looking for information on the “Southern Slasher Serial killer” she begins to suspect that perhaps he was the actual killer. While she is trying to obtain DNA while having coffee with him in her office, there is a prison break. Charlie, the lawyer and six young people brought to the prison for a “Scared Straight” program are all loaded onto a bus with six death row inmates, four of them serial killers who Charlie has studied. Charlie’s first concern is to save the other hostages, as she knows what these men are capable of. Just when Charlie is about to be killed, Michael Garland shows up and is able to take over the body of his look alike while he is unconscious. The rest of the book is about catching the escaped convicts, saving the hostages and trying to figure out what is going to happen to Michael the next time he is sucked into Spookville.

Once I got into the story, I could not put it down. I wanted to find out who was going to get caught and how, will the hostages survive and of course what is going to happen to Michael and Charlie. You need to like paranormal/supernatural stories to enjoy this book and series because it is out there. The characters of Charlie and Michael are very likeable. Their strong feelings toward one another are almost palpable. The character of Tam, Charlie’s friend who is a psychic is not as well developed, but I would like to know more about her. She is so loyal that you would want her as a friend. There is a bit of a love triangle with FBI agent Tony Bartoli, but he realizes that he will never be more than a friend or family as Charlie explains to him. He does not see ghosts but does believe that Charlie does. The ending came as a complete surprise, yet in the vein of the series, I loved it. This was a great end to this series. I will say that there seemed to be a lot more sex in this book and it was described a bit more visually, but I read the other books a few years ago, so I might just have forgotten those parts. I definitely recommend this book and series to those who love a paranormal romance with a mystery/thriller storyline. An enjoyable read.

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