Although I like Jackson’s New Orleans series better, If Only She Knew is an oldie standalone that showcases Jackson’s early talents. Readers of romantic suspense who don’t want to invest in a series will find much to like here.
A horrific car accident that killed her friend Pam has left Marla Cahill in a coma. When she wakes, she has no recollection that she has a newborn baby, a sixteen year old daughter, and is married to the wealthy Alex Cahill. Her doctor believes the amnesia will only be temporary, but it isn’t just that she doesn’t remember; it’s that none of it seems real. The only person that seems vaguely familiar is Nick Cahill, Alex’s brother and the black sheep of the family, who has returned to San Francisco to investigate the family company’s finances. According to her everyone, Marla had been in a relationship with Nick until she left him to marry his brother.
There is something very wrong going on at the cold Cahill mansion, where her family is determined to keep her from learning about her past. Alex leaves in the middle of the night with no explanation. Eugenia, Marla’s mother in law, has the keys to an office Alex keeps locked at all times. No one seems to know what happened to her purse, where she kept her identification, after the accident. None of what she is being told rings true and it is hard to fathom that Marla was the woman every says she is, especially when some of her memory returns and contradicts what she is being told.
Nick also finds the family’s behavior suspicious and feels that there is something very sinister at work. Marla can trust no one, not even her own family, expect for Nick, the only man she feels a connection with. Can Nick help her discover the truth that everyone is determined she not know?