Perfect Strangers – The End (Pages 289-end)

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RATING: SUPERB

SPOILERS!!!

The end had another twist I didn’t see coming.

After reaching a dead end when they talked to Tyler, the man who was in jail with Michael Asner, Josh and Sophie decide that the best way to discover what is going on is to talk to the Russians. Tyler had told them that the man who killed Michael was Uri the Bear as he expected payment. Uri is still in prison, but his son is the one who handles his business. So Sophie and Josh travel to Miami. They find the man and tell them everything, about the book and the messages in it, but the encounter doesn’t go well as Josh is beaten up and almost drowned as the Russians think that Sophie is keeping information from them. When it is clear that Sophie doesn’t know anything else, they let them go.

It is after this incident that Sophie and Josh get together. It is Sophie, who takes the initiative and tells Josh he is the person who makes her happy. Then follows a night of passion. The following day Josh surprises her by producing the book he had given the Russians. Actually, he gave them a copy, but he kept the original as he knew that Sophie wanted to keep it. Josh finally cracks the code, and Benedict Grear refers to a place, and not a man. It is Ben Grear, a mountain in Scotland, and the numbers are the coordinates. So they and Lana fly to Scotland, and following the coordinates they reach a castle. They search the place, and Sophie realises that her father indeed was there. She finds a safe and after she manages to open it, she finds a bearer bond for a bank in Vanuatu.

It is at that moment that Lana shows her cards. Her family was never part of the fraud, but all she wanted was the money. She had been Peter Ellis’s lover for two years, but she married Simon as Peter had no money. Then he told her about the hidden cash in Vanuatu, but she needed the bearer bond, and that was why he set Sophie up and used Nick. The great shock was when Lana lets out that she and Josh had been working together. Sophie is very hurt as she had really loved Josh.

Things are not so straight. In London Ruth and Ian Fox had been working in the case separately. Ruth had a bee in her bonnet about Lana after she talked to Mike, the young man working with Sophie in the gym. He told her that it was strange that Lana would hire Sophie as a personal trainer as Sophie had not even been working in the gym that day. Mike even tells her that the woman had refused the personal trainer offered by the gym. So Ruth also reaches the conclusion that there was something fishy there, and she gets to suspect that maybe Nick and Lana were working together to entrap Sophie for some reason. With the help of Chuck, one of her colleagues, they get hold of the hotel lobby CCTV footage, and though the picture is grainy they manage to identify the woman entering and leaving the hotel at the time when Nick was murdered. Ruth manages to talk to Lana’s housekeeper, and she cleverly takes a Biro, which she later hands Ian so that it can be tested for fingerprints.

It is when she and Ian are together that they receive a call from Josh. They travel to Scotland to find Sophie in the castle alone. She tells them everything, and when they return to the lodge where Lana, Josh, and Sophie had stayed the night before, the woman is being arrested. Sophie learns that Josh agreed to work for Lana when the woman put it forward to him on the way to New York. Josh thought that working from inside would make it easier to learn the truth and protect Sophie. He never wanted to hurt Sophie. Josh gives her a letter that he found in the castle from her father, explaining him why he did what he did. Josh also tells her that he found the deeds to the castle and she is now the owner as well as the land around it. In the end they end up together, and the future appears brighter for them.

As for Ruth, she gets her story. Her boyfriend David stole her previous story and published it even though she threatened him. Yet, now she knows that this story of hers is much better and will ensure her job at the newspaper. She also manages to get a date with Ian Fox, so she also gets something for her personal life out of this adventure.

I really loved the story. It was so full of twists and surprises. I had the hunch that Nick and Michael Asner were linked, but I had no idea how. It was really good!!!

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