Blind Delusion is the second book by Phaire and continues her story of Renee Hayes, a middle-aged psychotherapist. Hayes is in a failing marriage, having recently ended her affair with a younger police detective and is still trying to find the love she knows she wants, but hasn’t yet had, in her life. Several story lines converge around Hayes and her accidental re-meeting with Deek Hamilton, her former lover. Hayes’ husband, Bill, takes her to a birthday dinner hosted by Clifton Shaw, a local attorney and DC power player. Bill is actively being courted by Shaw for a new company he’s starting up, and she has misgivings about both his association with Shaw and this sudden shift in his career. A cross-story about Brenda Johnson and her husband Jerome, who is caught up in a local drug ring, collide with Hayes’, as Deek is investigating the dealer Jerome works for. Deek needs Hayes to assist him because the drug dealer has started dating one of her best friends. Through everything, Hayes keeps looking for that spark that is missing in her life.
Phaire has a strong sense of character, and all of them come across full and three-dimensional. Hayes is particularly well written, and her internal thoughts and conflicts give pathos to a woman of a certain age trying to make the best of what they have and yet not settle for less than they feel they deserve. Blind Delusion is a strong romantic thriller that successfully blends both genres.