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Under Currents

by Nora Roberts

Relationship Stories Thriller and Suspense Books of the Month Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel

LoveReading Expert Review of Under Currents

Feisty and hard-hitting, look beneath the covers and you will discover a rather touching relationship story.

If you enjoy your relationship stories with a sharp spike of drama and a hefty dose of attitude then this could well be the book for you. A violent father terrorises his children, as Zane and his sister grow up, a particular incident changes their lives and sets in motion their future. While best described as romantic suspense, it does actually feel as though there are two stories here as Nora Roberts lays out the background to the trauma of Zane’s childhood before we then meet him as an adult. She really doesn’t pull any punches, yet manages to thoughtfully balance the aggression with love and support from outside of the immediate family. The suspense is handled nicely, with the reader being ahead of the game, and therefore squirming as the characters leave one particular avenue unexplored. While there is violence to be found between the pages, it is the later relationship tale that sits at its heart and turns this into a two-part tale. Under Currents is an engaging, hard-hitting read, sitting within a very romantic relationship tale. 

Liz Robinson

Under Currents Synopsis

Every town has its ugly little secrets...

From the outside, the house in Lakeview Terrace looks perfect and the Bigelows seem like the perfect family: the respected surgeon father, the glamorous, devoted mother and two beautiful children. A perfect family, in a perfect house living their perfect lives.

But perfect surfaces can hide dark undercurrents and behind closed doors lies a very different story. Teenager Zane and his younger sister, Britt, are terrorised by their violent father and dysfunctional mother. Too afraid to speak out, Zane does his best to protect his sister and counts the days until they can finally be free.

One dark, brutal night when their father's temper takes a horrifying turn for the worse, the perfect facade is exposed for the lie it is and Zane and Britt manage to escape. With the help of their beloved aunt, they rebuild their lives a day at a time, creating new families and putting their past behind them. But a childhood like that can cast a shadow the length of a lifetime. Can Zane and Britt ever be free of their past? Or will those dark undercurrents rise to the surface, forcing them to fight for their lives once again...

About This Edition

ISBN: 9780349421940
Publication date: 14th May 2020
Author: Nora Roberts
Publisher: Piatkus
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 544 pages
Primary Genre Thriller and Suspense
Other Genres:
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What To Read After Under Currents

All Fall Down
The One That Got Away
Anatomy of a Scandal
I Invited Her In

Under Currents Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.

A comprehensive and readable account of the effects of hidden domestic abuse.

Norah Roberts is always interesting and a very capable writer who does not evade difficult issues. In Under Currents she addresses domestic abuse and its long term effects on individuals and families.

Teenage Zane and his younger sister Britt live, apparently happily to the outside world, with parents Dr Graham Bigelow and stay at home mother Eliza. Crunch time comes when Zane tries to stop his father from attacking Eliza and is himself very badly assaulted. Unbelievably Eliza, although severely injured, takes his father's side. The early part of the novel is quite direct in describing the violence so be prepared.

Zach eventually escapes the house and moves away to college. He finds a girlfriend Darby who has experienced trauma of her own. So, in the end, this is quite a wide examination of some of society's ills. Any more details would probably give too much information.

I found the characters, both good and bad, very well portrayed, as were their relationships with each other. There was no attempt to gloss over the 'baddies'. Under Currents is a very readable book as you would expect from such an established author.

Although the subject matter is perturbing it is nonetheless part of our communities. I feel this is an important book to read, particularly because of the unflinching honesty with which it describes domestic abuse.

maxine broadbent

Undercurrents by Nora Roberts is a great way to while away the time, especially during these restrictive days of coronavirus. A great read, full of detail and suspense, yet another successful novel

Undercurrents by Nora Roberts was sent to me by LoveReading to review. With Coronavirus taking a hold in the UK at present it is important to keep busy and reading this new offering was a great way to relax and lose oneself in the pages of this thick and meaty novel. The story has some harrowing moments with domestic abuse and family relationships taking a front seat, but is certainly makes for an exciting read. The main character Zane is down to earth and a hero on many levels, alongside his side kick Darby and many others. I became totally engrossed in this novel, and couldn't put it down. I was carrying it around the house so I could read a few pages wherever I was!
Nora Roberts certainly has a way with words and having read some of her offerings before this is certainly up there with the best. I would recommend this to anyone who likes a good read.

Glenda WORTH

I was utterly engrossed in this brutal and hard-hitting romantic suspense story, so much so that there were times I could barely blink as the tension ratcheted up.

“Under Currents” was my first Nora Roberts novel, so I went into this with no preconceptions other then I knew she was the number-one New York Times bestselling author of more than 200 novels. It was obvious from the first few pages alone that this was a seasoned author who knows exactly how to draw the reader in early on. I was utterly engrossed in this brutal and hard-hitting romantic suspense story, so much so that there were times I could barely blink as the tension ratcheted up.
Focusing on spousal and child domestic abuse, it was exceedingly hard to read at times and a definite trigger for anyone who may be affected by this subject but it was a truly well written and brilliantly researched book into the emotions that go into the victims of abuse and their fears of retribution if they speak out.
There were three parts to the story. The first was a gut-wrenching and very emotional account of brother and sister Zane and Britt and their lives with their abusive father and powerless mother. The second part, many years later featured the introduction of Darby McCray, a landscape gardener looking to set up her business in Lakeview at the same time Zane decides to return home there. This is where you feel a false sense of security as you just know that when the third part arrives it’s all going to kick off again. Brilliantly written, however, the denouement was rather expected but I enjoyed the build-up to it regardless and the romantic element although slightly cheesy in a realistic world was tastefully written and suited the ambience of the characters, location and plot.
I loved Zane, a character to truly endear to and fall a little in love with and even though Darby was a talented landscape gardener who could more than take care of herself, I couldn’t help but feel a little jealousy as she started to befriend Zane!
All in all a fabulous family saga with a romantic suspense element that had me hooked from the very first page and with the attention to detail in the different plants and growing techniques, I now feel energised for a spot of gardening myself!
4 stars and I will definitely be reading more by Nora Roberts again.

Miriam Smith

Fab book, well written, great characters and I read it in no time at all just so I could find out what would happen.

Under Currents by Nora Roberts is a great read. I connected with both Darby and Zane straight away and although the story was slow in parts you get a real sense of their characters. I did find the book a little predictable but it didn't stop me racing through it to find out what would happen. I haven't read any of Nora's books previously but I shall be looking to read more.

Krissy Rix

Under Currents by Nora Roberts starts off with a bang and tapers to a steady story about abuse of power in the beginning to the repercussions of those in a sleepy town.

Under Currents by Nora Roberts starts off with a bang and tapers to a steady story about abuse of power in the beginning to the repercussions of those in a sleepy town.
The main characters are well written and the action fast-paced but steady. It spans several years and is split into four distinct parts within the book.

Riki Bill

An enjoyable read from Nora Roberts with a cast of likeable characters who pull you along on their journey. A more challenging theme throughout the book rather than it being romance-led but the usual Robert’s charm nonetheless.

This book was by an author I have read before but this time the suspense and the challenging theme throughout the storyline made for quite difficult reading at times. At the heart of this tale is resilience, family and ultimately love. Robert’s usual romance-led prose I felt took a back seat for this more challenging read but I was still unable to put it down, reading it in 2 days.
The story follows the main character Zane from his teenage years to adulthood and his determination to not let past experiences hold him back. The first part of the book about his childhood makes for strong emotions of anger and sadness and but as he evolves into a moral and determined man his move home means he is surrounded by close family and friends. Darcy a new inhabitant to his hometown is there to nurture a new business for herself and their paths cross. Will they be able to face the challenges ahead from the undercurrents that threaten them both?
A really enjoyable story and one which made me go through a range of emotions – anger, sadness, fear, worry and joy. I would recommend you add this book to your reading list. 

sheila robertson

A very good read.

As usual a very good book by Nora Roberts. It combines a family story with a mystery. I found myself really caring about the characters and by the end I wanted more. I wanted to know how their lives turned out. Yes definitely worth reading.

Celia Cohen

This had me hooked from the first page - a great read

I hadn't read any Nora Roberts for many many years. I've been missing out.

I loved the style and the descriptions of places - I definitely had pictures in my mind. As for the characters - they were so real to me. The book was in 3 parts - part 1 is the early life of Zane and his sister Britt and the following parts as they grow into adults, have a family and how their lives evolve. It is a real page turner, I'm trying hard not to give any plot away, but I highly recommend this. Now I am off to find some more books by Nora Roberts.

Alison Bisping

A renowned author I now need to explore romantic, suspense not too dark - not afraid of tackling difficult issues and writing well. Recommended read.

I have to confess I have never read any of Nora Roberts writing before. Although I am still working in the COVID 19 world - I read this on my day off. I was surprised with mixed reviews as I enjoyed this book very much.

The book tackles some disturbing issues such as domestic violence - uncomfortable but the author tackles this well. The characters are real and well defined and although I was expecting a full-on dark thriller, it was a romance and suspense - a different slant but it worked really well. For me, in this climate, it was lighter and at times I thought this to be quite humorous again not quite what I was expecting but pleasantly surprised. There were a few twists and turns and I did get the ending but a really enjoyable read.
Now to discover this author's other books I cannot believe I have overlooked this fab author

Recommended and thank you for letting me read this.

Jane Brown

One of those books where you think, I'll just read another chapter and then it's suddenly 2am!

Again, another major best selling author who I've somehow never read. Well, I definitely will be reading her work again!

Darby is a successful landscape gardener, marred by a difficult past. When she moves to a quiet lakeside town she starts to feel settled. She also develops a relationship with kind, caring, Zane. But Zane has dark secrets in his past too and the past will come to trouble them both.

This book really did have something for everyone! Intrigue, suspense, romance, family, crime. It was one of those books where you think, I'll just read another chapter and then suddenly it's 2 am! Fast-paced and interesting all the way through. I would recommend to anyone wanting a good, gripping read.

Sarah Jones

I loved the plot, storyline, descriptions of people and places, characters and landscaping business. Fires the imagination.

I love Nora Roberts and it has been years since I last read her, so was really excited to read this book.
The book is separated into parts. This is a very realistic storyline and the book will take you through the whole reel of emotions. This had a lot of characters but you loved most of them and wanted everything to turn out well for them.
A really well-written story, plot, characters, descriptions of places and of what family means.
I did enjoy this book and would recommend it be on your reading list.

Andrea Stordy

Nora Roberts Press Reviews

If you're after the perfect pick-me-up, take-me-away-from-the-world read, then she's your woman - Guardian

The most popular novelist on Planet Earth - Washington Post

Nora Roberts is a superstar - New York Times

I love Nora Roberts - Stephen King

Other editions of this book

ISBN: 9780349421940
Publication date: 14/05/2020
Format: Paperback

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About Nora Roberts

With more than 280 million copies of her books in print and over a hundred New York Times bestsellers to date, Nora Roberts is indisputably the most celebrated and beloved women’s fiction writer today. She is also the author of the bestselling ‘In Death’ suspense series written under the pen name J. D. Robb.

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