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Monday, December 29, 2014

THE BABY RESCUE by Margaret Daley


Wanda Barefoot reviews.
"Evil is in our world. It's how we deal with it that's important. Do we let it overtake our lives or do we do our small part to stop it? We all have choices." -Colton Phillips from The Baby Rescue by Margaret Daley.

U.S. Deputy Marshal Colton Phillips is a determined man. Determined to catch every criminal he comes up against. Nothing changes when he is assigned to a case involving a child-smuggling ring. Someone is selling babies and it's up to a team of experts to find the ones responsible and stop them and Colton makes it his top priority. He's focused. He knows what is expected of him. He has a one-track mind--until F.B.I. Agent Lisette Sutton is assigned to be his partner. Colton's one-track mind starts to wander to a place he's not sure he wants it to go and that could be dangerous.

F.B.I. Agent Lisette Sutton is on constant guard. Not just from the danger of each new case but from her colleagues as well. She is a woman in what's typically considered a man's world. Since her mother, who was also an F.B.I. agent, left her job under questionable circumstances, Lisette has had to prove her ability to do her job more than ever before. Catching the leader of a child-smuggling ring will earn her the respect and prestige she has worked so hard for. The one thing that can get in the way is her partner, Colton Phillips. Can she separate her work from her growing feelings for this dedicated and driven man?

I have to admit, characters in uniforms draw my interest very easily. Firemen. Paramedics. U.S. Marshals. They are tough. Determined. Protective. Dedicated. You really can't go wrong reading about them. The same is true in The Baby Rescue. But the added bonus is you not only have one hunk to go ga-ga over, you have several. But it's not all about the guys. Lisette is one tough cookie and a tip-top F.B.I. agent. She struggles throughout the the story with forgiving her mother which, in turn, causes her to struggle with her faith. But Colton's gentle prodding and words of faith help Lisette realize that forgiveness is the key to happiness which I feel is a beautiful part of this story. 

Colton is thorough, determined and protective. He is a man of strong faith. A by-product of the foster care system, he changes agencies every two years. He has never stayed in once place for very long and really doesn't foresee that ever changing. But all it takes is the love of one woman to completely turn his world upside down. Colton is a loner and easy to talk to. Lisette hates loose ends. When they come together as a team it's explosive, both professionally and personally. Watching their relationship unfold is truly a joy that adds quite a bit of enjoyment to the story.

Action? This book has loads of action. Colton and Lisette are part of a team of officers assigned to protect a witness through the WitSec Program and danger is constantly looming over them. From car chases to flying bullets-- the reader really gets drawn into the story at a fast pace. But my biggest love of this book was "Baby C", the infant Colton and Lisette both swore to protect. Without even a real name she managed to worm her way into my heart just like she did the officers on the case. This being said, the child-smuggling ring is an exciting and powerful plot that will keep you thoroughly entertained until the very last page. This is my first book in this series but it won't be my last by any means. Margaret Daley is a true master in suspense writing and anyone that loves books centered around high profile cases will love it. Definitely worth the read!

Check out her latest release from Love Inspired Suspense, A Yuletide Rescue

About Wanda.

I am a self-proclaimed reviewer who turned my love of reading into a way to help authors get more recognition for the amazing stories they write for bibliophiles like me. I love God and family and I have a special love for all animals, both big and small. If I'm not reading you can most likely find me on my computer tinkering with graphics and my own personal web design. You can read more of my reviews on my blog at www.abookloversretreat.com , on Facebook at www.facebook.com/abookloversretreat or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/flghtlss1.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

BURIED by Elizabeth Goddard

Marji Laine reviews.
I've had the greatest pleasure indulging in Elizabeth Goddard's newest book from Love Inspired Suspense, Buried.

Secrets and suspicions color Leah Marks's life. She trusts no one, especially men. But with her survival at stake, she's forced to break her cardinal rule and actually rely on another person. Big mistake. One that can get others hurt and make her far more vulnerable than she's ever allowed before.

Cade Warren is an avalanche expert and mountain rescuer by occupation and passion. But he doesn't get involved with the people he helps. And having been burned by an old girlfriend, he particularly keeps women at a distance. Until a pair of blue-green eyes full of terror look up at him through a tunnel of snow. Helping this girl could cost him more than his pride or his heart. It could very well cost him his life.

Elizabeth Goddard weaves a non-stop story with Buried in the fictional town of Mountain Cove, Alaska. The plot gripped me from the first page. I was living this nightmare with the main character and experiencing a little panic as the character dealt with her sudden peril. Terrifying!

Half-way through the book, I had my family chuckling over the gasps I kept emitting. One action after another not only kept the pace high (and kept me flipping pages as fast as I could) but twisted the characters into a knot that offered no chance of escape - the mark of excellence in any suspense!

And this suspense is indeed excellent, but the story doesn't stop there. The two main characters had instant chemistry and a palpable romance blooming. Yummy! I would so love to see this story hit the big screen!

I also have to applaud the consistent faith in both characters. The threads of a spiritual walk had deep foundations in both of them. As exemplified in what became a theme of the story: Proverbs 3:27 "Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act."

This book releases January 1st and should be at the top of your list for 2015!

Your turn: This book is full of cold weather, being set in Alaska. What's your favorite snowy activity?

Senior Reviewer Marji Laine is a homeschooling mom of two teenagers and two graduates. She loves winter, though often only gets a taste of it in North Texas. Her favorite snowy activity is sledding - well, watching - and taking pictures. Especially when her dog is pulling her kids down the hill. A budding author, she has collaborated in a novella, Love Boat Bachelor, which releases in February. You can find her at her Faith Driven Fiction website, on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, and her Amazon author page.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

DESPERATE MEASURES by Christy Barritt

Sybil Bates McCormack reviews.
Desperate Measures, the first book I’ve read by prolific author Christy Barritt, opens in classic Love Inspired Suspense fashion. Scrambling to her vehicle in a darkened grocery store parking lot, heroine-on-the-run Samantha Rogers has one eye fixed on her car and the other peeled over her shoulder. A woman with a dodgy past—a past that is quickly catching up to her and an innocent young son—Sam is more than a little afraid of things that go bump in the night.

Sam’s worst fears are realized as a massive, menacing figure emerges from the darkness. When the man hobbles her with a violent blow to the jaw, she quickly recognizes two things. One: She’ll be dead in moments if she fails to escape. And two: Connor, the son she’s uprooted from the only life he ever knew, will have lost everything. For Sam, failure simply isn’t an option. Connor’s safety is always paramount in her thoughts. Leveraging a brief window of escape, Samantha breaks free of her attacker and dashes into the nearby restaurant/makeshift boarding house where she’s been “holed up” for several months.

Ex-Coast Guard officer John Wagner spots a bleeding, disheveled Samantha as she clambers in through the back door. The sight of Sam in distress sets John’s blood boiling. The story’s handsome, but troubled, hero—who harbors a fairly daunting secret of his own—can’t help wondering who attacked the stunning blonde living in the apartment above his friends’ business. When Sam informs the restaurant owners that she’s been in an accident and needs to move on, John’s innate protectiveness kicks in. He offers to help, but the skittish beauty quickly declines. Her mind is made up. Fortunately for Sam, John’s not big on taking “no” for an answer. As she exits the restaurant, he offers her a job—a proposition she turns down initially but later reconsiders. It isn’t long before Sam shows up on Smuggler’s Cove, a tiny island off the coast of Virginia, to accept John’s offer of work.

From there, things really get interesting.

Just what kinds of secrets are this baggage-heavy couple-in-the-making hiding from one another? And what unknown dangers lurk in the shadows on Smuggler’s Cove?

I’ll never tell. (Smile.) You’ll have to read this captivating yarn for yourself to find out.

Word to the wise, though: No one does novella-length suspense like the authors at Love Inspired, and the clever Christy Barritt is certainly no exception. Her main characters’ goals are clear, their motivations solid and believable, and their personal journeys—though rough and circuitous—ultimately meaningful and satisfying. Small-town criminal intrigue is never in short supply on balmy Smuggler’s Cove, and the author peppers the island with just enough potential “wolves in sheep’s clothing” to keep the reader guessing at who’s worthy of trust and who isn’t.

Oh, yeah. Make no mistake: A sweet, disarming romance gradually unfurls over the course of this story. But, it’s as complicated as any budding relationship would be between two people who’ve come out on the other side of past hurts. Especially since multiple obstacles, internal and external, threaten to keep Desperate Measures’ appealing lead couple apart.

Fans of inspirational romantic suspense will find Desperate Measures a quick, satisfying read. Author Christy Barritt delivers the kind of intimate glimpses into the lives of a protective hero and spirited heroine that fans of the genre have come to appreciate. The author ensures you know exactly what the characters are thinking. The reader, moreover, not only senses the characters’ emotional fragility, she experiences it. I would only add that Ms. Barritt does an admirable job of lacing an authentic faith element into the story and forges a lovely “father”-son relationship between John and Connor that would melt even the hardest heart.

Read. This. Book.


A licensed Georgia attorney since 1998, Sybil Bates McCormack now writes healthcare proposals during the day while lurching haltingly toward becoming an inspirational romantic suspense author at night. She's also the crazed wife of a bi-vocational pastor and mom to two bright, talented kids. They don't call her BizzySyb for nothing! You can visit Sybil at her blog, Christian Romance/Pulsating Suspense, subscribe to her online paper, The InspyReader Gazette, follow her on FacebookPinterest and Twitter, friend her on GoodReads, connect with her on LinkedIn, and add her to your circles on Google+.

Monday, December 8, 2014

HAWK by Ronie Kendig

Brittany McEuen reviews.
Staff Sergeant and Raptor team member Brian “Hawk” Bledsoe is an ace at communications, but struggles to control his volatile temper. When his anger flares during an attempt to protect an Afghan woman named Fekiria, he finds himself facing a possible dishonorable discharge.

Fekiria is a woman of many secrets. She is a pilot in the Afghan Air Force and if her family finds out, she is as good as dead. She is definitely feeling the stress of keeping her secret life under wraps.

Hawk and Raptor work tirelessly to track down the terrorists who have infiltrated the American military’s communications system. Meanwhile, Fekiria unwittingly ends up in the middle of the terrorists’ plans. When Hawk and Fekiria find themselves running for their lives and are forced to escape into the mountains of Afghanistan, Hawk will do anything to keep Fekiria and the other women and children traveling with him alive.

Hawk is book two in The Quiet Professionals series. Raptor 6 is book one. This series is truly ongoing from book to book. Each story builds on the one before it as more of the terrorist plot is revealed and Raptor team comes closer to discovering who is out to get them.

Once again, just as in Raptor 6, we see the story through the eyes of both the hero and heroine, but we also get glimpses into the minds of the terrorists. This builds some great tension in the book. Seeing the villains lay out their plans and the Americans unwittingly play into their hands is hard to read about!

One of the things that I really enjoyed in Hawk is the fact that Brian and Fekiria are not Christians. Both do have questions about God, though. Brian was raised with Christian grandparents and he strives to please his grandfather, a man who does his best to guide Brian to God. But Brian has had things happen in his life that make trusting in God difficult. It has just been easier to trust in his own strength. Fekiria was raised in the Muslim faith. She has two Christian influences in her life, but has been antagonistic toward their attempts to teach her about Isa “Jesus”. Honestly, Fekiria was not a character that I liked in Raptor 6. However, I did like her in Hawk. There were many times I didn’t understand her thought processes. But as the book progressed, I really enjoyed watching her growth.

The action in Ronie Kendig’s books is always intense and Hawk is no exception! Expect the unexpected and be prepared for a heart-racing struggle to survive. The attraction between Hawk and Fekiria started off subtle. Neither are looking for a soul mate. But when the romance woven between Hawk and Fekiria took hold, it truly took my breath away. I definitely recommend this action-packed book! And special thanks to the author and publisher for providing this book in return for an honest review.


(Don't forget that book 1 in the Quiet Professionals series, Raptor 6, is currently in a giveaway! Leave a message on the free book announcement article to be included in this opportunity.)

About Brittany:
I am a busy homeschooling mom to four children, ranging from kindergarten to high school. I’m happily married to my high school sweetheart and am an avid reader and book reviewer. I feature book reviews, giveaways, and occasional author interviews on my blog, Britt Reads Fiction. You can also connect with me on Pinterest and Goodreads.