Reading

Unknown Threat – Lynn H. Blackburn | A Book Review

Unknown Threat - Lynn H. Blackburn

Title: Unknown Threat

Author: Lynn H. Blackburn

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the first in the Defend and Protect series following Faith Malone, an FBI special agent, and Luke Powell, a US Secret Service Special Agent. They have to work together to find out why someone is targeting agents and trying to kill them.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

First impressions: I was looking forward to reading this novel because I’ve read Blackburn before. I like the simple title and cover. The beginning piqued my interest and made me want to see how things would unfold.

Characters: I could relate to both Faith and Luke. They have an interesting relationship that develops throughout the novel. Some of the secondary characters stood out to me as well.

Quote:

“But sometimes love happens, and the joy of it is discovering how to love someone who isn’t like you at all.”

Writing: The book is under 350 pages, so it’s not too long or too short. There are some cliffhangers and surprises at the end of a few chapters. I found the plot a little disjointed and unrealistic. At times, the novel focuses more on the characters and their conversations than the case and the investigation.

Final thoughts: The ending ties up loose ends and wraps everything up quite quickly. If you want to read a romantic suspense about federal agents from different agencies teaming up to solve a quirky case, check out Unknown Threat.


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Reading

The Runaway – Lisa Childs | A Book Review

The Runaway - Lisa Childs

Title: The Runaway

Author: Lisa Childs

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the first in the Bane Island Trilogy. Rosemary Tulle gets a message from her sister, asking to be picked up from a treatment center that used to be an asylum. To learn the truth about Genevieve’s disappearance, Rosemary turns to a man she wants nothing to do with in Whit Lawrence.

First impressions: The premise intrigued me because I love a good mystery. The title and cover do a good job hinting at what the novel is about. I found it easy enough to get into the story thanks in part to the short, suspenseful chapters.

Characters: There are more characters than I expected, and it took some time for me to warm up to them. I liked how the relationship between Rosemary and Whit developed.

Quote:

“Every man has something or someone in his past that haunts him.”

Writing: The book is a little over 300 pages long, alternating between different perspectives. In my opinion, the narrative unfolded at a good pace, especially at the end. It’s well-written aside from a few mistakes here and there.

Final thoughts: I saw some twists coming, but I still enjoyed seeing the story play out. The ending ties up many loose ends while also setting the stage for the next novel. If you like mystery with a romantic subplot, check out The Runaway.


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Reading

Standoff – Patricia Bradley | A Book Review

Standoff - Patricia Bradley

Title: Standoff

Author: Patricia Bradley

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the first in the Natchez Trace Park Rangers series, following Luke Fereday who infiltrates a drug organization and Brooke Danvers who investigates her father’s murder.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

First impressions: The premise sounded interesting, especially since I enjoy a fast-paced suspense novel as much as anyone. There’s a prologue, and the beginning sets up the rest of the story.

Characters: I liked Luke as well as Brooke because they felt like real people. Luke’s protectiveness and Brooke’s independence made for some interesting scenes. I didn’t have a problem keeping track of all the secondary characters either.

Quote:

“You’ll learn that it’s not always in your best interest to tell everything you know, especially when you’re not certain who’s trustworthy.”

Writing: The book is almost 400 pages long. I enjoyed the short chapters that make me want to continue reading to find out what happens next. Bradley includes a bit of romance but not too much as to overwhelm the main plot.

Final thoughts: It wasn’t difficult to predict certain events, which is why the reveal of the different villains didn’t surprise me. That being said, I enjoyed the ending nonetheless. It wraps up loose ends and gives readers closure. If you enjoy a solid mystery with some romance sprinkled in, consider checking out Standoff.


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Reading

Secrets At Cedar Cabin – Colleen Coble | A Book Review

Secrets At Cedar Cabin - Colleen Coble

Title: Secrets At Cedar Cabin

Author: Colleen Coble

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the third novel in a series about Bailey Flemming who is running for her life after her mother gets murdered, and Lance Phoneix who is looking for his sister after she ran away from home as a teenager.

I received a free copy from the publisher via BookLook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review.

First impressions: The premise piqued my interest. I like the title and cover. I didn’t even realize this was the third book, and I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Characters: One drawback of not reading the rest of the series is I had a tough time keeping track of all the characters. Bailey and Lance are likeable though.

Quote:

“Life had been coming at her from every direction…”

Writing: It’s told in the third person, alternating between various character’s viewpoints. The descriptions included a lot of adverbs.

While I enjoyed the suspense, I didn’t love all the romance. Some of the dialogue felt unrealistic or cliché, especially the romantic moments between Bailey and Lance.

The chapters are short and suspenseful. Many of them end on a cliffhanger. I enjoyed seeing the plot play out.

The novel sheds light on the issue of sex trafficking. It also references God and religion.

Final thoughts: The ending ties up loose ends. There’s even an epilogue. Although the book answers some lingering questions, the ending unfolded quickly.

If you like romantic suspense, Secrets At Cedar Cabin has a lot of both.


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Reading

The Reckoning At Gossamer Pond – Jamie Jo Wright | A Book Review

The Reckoning At Gossamer Pond - Jamie Jo Wright

Title: The Reckoning At Gossamer Pond

Author: Jamie Jo Wright

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s a story following two female protagonists, Libby and Annalise.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

First impressions: I read Wright’s debut novel, The House on Foster Hill, earlier this year. I liked it, so I figured I’d read another book by her. The stories are similar in style but different in many ways.

I think the cover is great. I also feel like the colours help establish the tone of the book.

Characters: I love that everyone is flawed, especially the main characters. They all seem to have secrets, and that makes them more relatable.

The female protagonists are great, and the male characters are likeable as well.

Quote:

“Never refrain from saying what you think.”

Writing: The story jumps between the past and present. I think Wright did a good job because the novel flows well.

There is more suspense than romance, which is totally fine by me.

Final thoughts: I didn’t predict the ending, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. One antagonist is more surprising to me than the other.

Overall, The Reckoning At Gossamer Pond is a good read. It’s not my favourite, but I had fun. If you like romance, religion, and suspense, check out Wright’s latest novel.


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Reading

Beneath the Surface – Lynn H. Blackburn | A Book Review

Beneath the Surface - Lynn H. Blackburn

Title: Beneath The Surface

Author: Lynn H. Blackburn

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the first in a series called Dive Team Investigations. A nurse named Leigh Weston has her life threatened on more than one occasion while homicide investigator, Ryan Parker, discovers a dead body in the ocean. When they discover a link between the killer and Leigh, Ryan tries to solve the murder in addition to protecting her at the same time.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

First impressions: There’s a cool diving scene in the beginning, which grabbed my attention right away because I’ve never read anything like it.

Characters:  Most of the characters, even the secondary ones, are likeable. To be honest, I thought the antagonist would have a more prominent role in the story.

I spotted a lot of common tropes like the protective older brother, which is one of my favourites. Even though he’s in another country for most of the novel, I adored his relationship with Leigh.

Quote:

“Love isn’t something you explain…”

Writing: I’m not the biggest fan of romance, so I found myself wishing the author spent a little more time on the other storylines instead. That being said, the romantic scenes only escalate to kissing, so it isn’t too bad.

The red herrings didn’t really work for me either. But I enjoyed the banter between characters. It made for some funny lines that eased some tension.

Final thoughts: I wanted more explanation regarding the killer’s motivations since the resolution with the villain feels a bit unresolved in my opinion.

If you’re interested in a novel that blends romance and suspense, consider reading Beneath The Surface.


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Reading

Oath Of Honor – Lynette Eason | A Book Review

Oath Of Honor - Lynette Eason

TitleOath Of Honor

Author: Lynette Eason

Genre: Romantic Suspense

About the book: It’s the first novel in the Blue Justice series.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

First impressions: I liked the premise of the novel. A cop dies, dirty cops may be involved. The title among with the cover piqued my interest as well.

Characters: Officer Izzy and detective Ryan are likeable, even relatable. Those on the bad side have motives that drive them to do evil things. Maybe it’s just me, but I felt like the story had a lot of characters to keep track of.

Quote:

“All we can do is just pray for the best.”

Writing: The short sentences and chapters build suspense. I didn’t mind the author’s style too much. There was a bit of eye-rolling in the beginning though.

I’m happy that the romance doesn’t dominate the plot. It’s off to the side as a secondary storyline.

The plot isn’t as unpredictable as other suspense novels. I figured out the person behind everything before the big reveal. So the mystery is easy to follow and not difficult to solve.

Final thoughts: The ending ties up loose ends. It’s not too long or too short. Overall, Oath Of Honor is a fun, fast read.


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