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Monday, July 27, 2015

FIREWALL by DiAnn Mills


Brittany McEuen reviews.

Firewall is Book 1 of the FBI: Houston series by DiAnn Mills.

The Short Version:

Taryn Young’s life is about to be turned upside down. A brainy and beautiful computer genius, Taryn has not been fortunate in love. But things finally seem to be looking up for Taryn’s love life. After a whirlwind courtship, she has married the man of her dreams. But is it all an illusion?

An airport bombing may be related to a scheme to steal the computer project that Taryn developed. Taryn and her missing husband are now the FBI’s prime suspects in the bombing.

Can Taryn trust Agent Grayson Hall? Will they be able to clear her name and determine who is behind the chaos? Can Taryn clear her husband’s name or is there a darker truth to be uncovered? What is real and who can she trust?

My review:

I enjoyed reading Firewall. It was an exciting story and kept my interest. I really did like these characters and thought the book kept up a nice, quick pace. There seemed to always be something happening, or a new piece of information being discovered.

My favorite parts of the story involved the mystery running through the book. There were multiple villains and it was not until the very end of the book that all of my questions were answered. The author completely floored me with the twists and turns the story took and with the ultimate “bad guy reveal”!

I also enjoyed the romance. It could be argued that Taryn is falling into another quick relationship, like the whirlwind courtship before her marriage. I don’t think it was unreasonable in this setting for Taryn and Grayson to develop feelings for each other and with Taryn’s lack of much romantic background, she might be susceptible to falling for another man quickly.

Two things required me to “suspend reality” and just enjoy the story, but they were minor as they related to my enjoyment of reading an exciting suspense novel. First, Taryn has a fairly monumental conversion from atheist to believer. Not unheard of, but she does become very solidly focused and knowledgeable about God quickly. Second, the villains seemed to be “super villains”. The various bad guys had everything covered and planned out, always seeming to outsmart the good guys. They were just so good at what they did! It was hard for me to believe that they could always be so many steps ahead of the FBI and Taryn. But, then again, it made the story very exciting and unpredictable.

This was my first book by DiAnn Mills and it will definitely not be my last. It was an exciting and engaging story.

How about you? Have you read any books by DiAnn Mills? What makes a romantic suspense novel stand out to you as a favorite? Do you have a favorite suspense novel?

About reviewer, Brittany McEuen:

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.

Monday, July 20, 2015

HIDDEN IDENTITY by Carol J. Post

Iola Goulton reviews:

Short Version:

From the Amazon entry for Hidden Identity by Carol J. Post. When Meagan Berry is caught on camera rescuing a senator, she knows her cover's been blown. After faking her death, she's spent months keeping her identity hidden from an abusive ex-fiancĂ©. Now he's on her trail in remote Cedar Key, Florida. 

Officer Hunter Kingston knows Meagan's running from something, but he can't imagine anyone wishing harm on the pretty artist. Then an intruder breaks into Meagan's house, and Hunter promises not to leave her side. 

But when evidence from the crime scene doesn't add up, Hunter wonders whether he should trust Meagan. Yet he will have to put his faith in this mysterious beauty if they both want to live to see another day.

My Review:

I’m always a fan of a good romantic suspense story, and this one ticks all the boxes: intelligent heroine with a secret, handsome and godly cop, and more twists than I usually find in a full-length novel, let alone a shorter Love Inspired Suspense. Even better, I didn’t see the twists coming …

It was also good to see Meagan’s struggles, both personal and spiritual. She's grown up surrounded by abusive men which means she finds it hard to trust men at all ... and even harder to trust God. If He's really on her side, why do all the bad things happen? 

I’m finding more and more books from Christian publishers are less “Christian” than clean fiction, so it’s good to see Love Inspired Suspense sticking to their branding and providing a solid Christian message.  Keep it up, LIS.

Anyway, Hunter was the perfect hero for a woman with issues about trusting men and trusting God, and I enjoyed getting to know him and see the way he was able to both keep Meagan safe and show her that not all men were abusive.

This is the second book in the Cedar Key series (following Deadly Getaway), but can easily be read as a standalone novel. It sounds like a great location for a holiday, as long as you don't mind all the murderous crazies the town seems to attract!

Thanks to the author for providing a free ebook copy of Hidden Identity for review.


About reviwer, Iola Goulton:

I am a freelance editor specializing in Christian fiction, and you can find out more about my services
at my website, or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Tsu .

I love reading, and read and review around 150 Christian books each year on my blog. I'm a Top 25 Reviewer at Christian Book, in the Top 1% of reviewers at Goodreads, and have an Amazon US Reviewer Rank that floats around 2500 (and I'm in the Top 50 at Amazon Australia).

Monday, July 13, 2015

UNDERCOVER BRIDE by Margaret Brownley

Marji Laine reviews:
I've been looking forward to reading Undercover Bride by Margaret Brownley since I read her last one, Petticoat Detective.

Here's the Short Version:
Pinkerton detective Maggie Cartwright is tasked with going undercover as a mail order bride. Her “fiancĂ©” is widower Garrett Thomas, aka the suspected Whistle-Stop Bandit. 
No sooner does Maggie arrive in Arizona Territory when she’s confronted with an early wedding date—the clock is ticking on her detective work or she may end up a criminal’s wife! As the day of the wedding draws near, Maggie begins to panic. 

The problem is that the more she gets to know Garrett and his two adorable children, the harder it is to keep up the deception. Can a man as kind and gentle as Garrett really be the Whistle-Stop Bandit?

My Take:

What a delight! Margaret Brownley writes palpable romance. The way she draws emotional word pictures twists and releases the reader at just the right intervals for a satisfying read.

But her plots are even more outstanding. Who would have dreamed that ... oh, no. You won't get me to spoil the whodunnit! Especially after the culprit went to such extremes to conceal himself.

Ms. Brownley describes her writing as "Love and Laughter in the Old West." True on both accounts. One scene left me howling. I don't even need to go into it. You'll know the scene I mean when you get there!

Suspense readers will love the intrigue here. Romance readers will love the secrets! Everyone will love the humor. Margaret Brownley has certainly become a a new favorite!

About the reviewer:

Suspense Sister Marji Laine writes about hope and redemption. Her characters, tangled in desperate situations, rely on authentic faith in God to carry them through treachery, betrayal, and impossible circumstances.

A Homeschooling mom of four, she has two still left in the nest. She directs a children’s choir at her church, coordinates the high school classes and the website at a large coop, and is the historian for the DFW Chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Giveaway: WILDERNESS PERIL by Elizabeth Goddard


From Marji Laine:
We're offering Wilderness Peril, one of my favorites from Elizabeth Goddard, to one blessed reader on Tuesday, July 14.

To enter, leave a comment with your email address. And share, in the midst of a smoking summer, what season do you prefer? (I'm rather partial to Fall - which is far too short in my neck of the woods!)

Here's some information about Wilderness Peril and a link to my full review!

Run off the road and left for dead, Shay Ridiker's only hope for surviving the frozen claws of the wilderness is pilot Rick Savage. The beautiful airplane mechanic came to Alaska expecting a routine repo, but a missing coworker and a crippled plane are just the tip of the iceberg.

Now held captive by ruthless killers at a derelict gold mine, Shay needs Rick's protection more than ever. But Rick has shadows that follow him into the land of the midnight sun. With gunmen at their backs, can he be all Shay needs—a haven…and a hero?

Don't forget to leave you're comment below to enter the drawing! And you can find more of Elizabeth's books at her website, ElizabethGoddard.com.