When she was a young girl, Candace Johnson was present when her mother was killed by a drunken, abusive lover. Aunt Maggie took Candace in but her home was one of harsh, religious judgments, and Candace fled as soon as she could. In the years since Candace made a good life for herself, marrying a police detective, raising two children, and opening her own beauty salon in Charlotte, North Carolina.
But good friends and a loving spouse are no protection from the violence of the world. Candace’s husband is killed, and two years later the murder remains unsolved. Candace has kept herself together for the sake of her children, but as When Rain Falls opens, she is hit with another hard blow: her best friend, Pamela Coleman, is murdered in her own garage. Her husband’s former partner is one of the detectives investigating Pamela’s murder. The other investigator, Darnell Jackson, is new to the Charlotte police force, but not new to Charlotte. The failure of the police department to solve her husband’s murder prompts Candace to investigate Pamela’s death; she just can’t loose her two soul mates without getting some answers–and some justice.
The two investigations–Candace’s and the official one–turn up unpleasant facts about Pamela, her law firm, and some respected people in her social circle. Candace and Detective Jackson butt heads over Candace’s activities even as they find themselves thrown together (and attracted to each other) in various social situations. The author does a good job of balancing several threads of the story–Candace’s backstory, her struggle as a mother and as a Christian, the possibility of a new romance, and the murder investigations–and concluding them in a satisfying way. The community of family, friends, and clients who support Candace is well drawn, adding another layer to the novel.
Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.