Tag Archives: Dee Henderson

Book Review: Sins of The Past

8 Feb

51qur6wq4yl-_sx322_bo1204203200_Three Novellas from Bestselling Authors

In Dee Henderson‘s Missing, a Wyoming sheriff is called to Chicago when his elderly mother goes missing. Paired with a savvy Chicago cop, the two realize her disappearance is no accident, and a race against the clock begins.

Dani Pettrey returns to Alaska with Shadowed, introducing readers to the parents of her beloved McKenna clan. Adventure, romance, and danger collide when a young fisherman nets the body of an open-water swimming competitor who may actually be a possible Russian defector.

Lynette Eason‘s Blackout delivers the story of a woman once implicated in a robbery gone wrong. The loot has never been found — but her memory of that night has always been unreliable. Can she remember enough to find her way to safety when the true culprit comes after her?

 

Dee Henderson is the author of 14 best-selling novels, including the acclaimed O’Malley series and the Uncommon Heroes series. As a leader in the inspirational romantic suspense category, her books have won or been nominated for several prestigious industry awards, including the RWA’s RITA Award, the Christy Award, the ECPA Gold Medallion, the Holt Medallion, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Golden Quill. Dee is a lifelong resident of Illinois and is active online. Visit her at http://www.deehenderson.com.

dani-press-page-photoDani Pettrey is a wife, mom, grandma, and the author of Cold Shot, the first book in the Chesapeake Valor series, and the Alaskan Courage romantic suspense series, which includes her bestselling novels Submerged, Shattered, Stranded, Silenced, and Sabotaged. Her books have been honored with the Daphne du Maurier award, two HOLT Medallions, a Christy Award nomination, two National Readers’ Choice Awards, the Gail Wilson Award of Excellence, and Christian Retailing’s Best Award, among others.

She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves — the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters’ faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their two daughters, a son-in-law, and a super adorable grandson.

71ml9pouful-_ux250_Award-winning, best-selling author, Lynette Eason has written/contracted thirty-six books since 2007. She writes for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line and for Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Her books have hit the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists. Lynette has been teaching for more than ten years and is very happy to make the transition from teaching school to teaching writing whenever the opportunity presents. She is married, has two children, and lives in Greenville, SC.

 

 

 

My Impressions:

February is the month for love and romance, and when a story is paired with action-packed suspense, well, you really cannot go wrong. The 3-novella collection, Sins of The Past has all that and more — the wonderful writing of not 1, not 2, but 3!! of the best romantic suspense authors in Christian fiction. When you dive into this book you are in for a sweet treat! You get tough and determined heroines, hunky heroes with a soft side, and twists and turns that make the pages fly. The only down side? You’ll be done with this book in no time and be yearning for more!

I loved that each novella was classic Henderson, Pettrey and Eason. In Missing, the reader returns to Chicago to solve the case of a missing mom. In Shadowed, the reader gets the low-down on the McKenna’s parents romantic beginning, as well as adrenaline-fueled suspense. And in Blackout, the reader will be on the edge of her seat trying to figure out just what the main characters are missing. Characters are easy to like, and the plots will keep you guessing. The common thread of a sin from the past that plagues the main characters is a clever way of linking the stories.

So if you are looking for the perfect Valentine’s read, I highly recommend you pick up Sins of The Past. I loved it and I am betting you will too!

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(Thanks to Bethany House for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

Top 10 Tuesday: 2016 Releases I Didn’t Read (But Should)

10 Jan

My TBR pile has reached staggering heights since I started blogging. Is it possible to have too many books? I think the problem is really not enough time to read — stuff like laundry and work just keeps getting in the way! In an effort to read what is on my shelves in 2017, I am practicing saying no to shiny new books. We’ll see how long that lasts. 😉 In the meantime, here is a list of the books that were released in 2016 that I failed to read, but really, really plan to. Can we put a freeze on 2017 releases until I get caught up?

For other bloggers woefully behind on their reading, check out The Broke And The Bookish this week.

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2016 Books That I Need to Read

The Cottage by Michael Phillips

Delilah by Angela Hunt

Dressed for Death by Julianna Deering

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The End of Law by Therese Down

The Innkeeper of Ivy Hall by Julie Klassen

Lead Me Home by Amy Sorrells

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The Shattered Vigil by Patrick Carr

Sins of The Past by Dee Henderson/Dani Pettrey/Lynette Eason

You’re The One That I Want by Susan May Warren

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Have you read any of these 2016 releases?

Which one should I read first?

Top 10 Tuesday — Back To School!

30 Aug

Thanks to the folks at The Broke And The Bookish for weekly hosting Top 10 Tuesday. This week is the Back To School Top 10. To find out what other bloggers are posting, click HERE.

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School has been back in session since the last week in July here in middle Georgia. So, so glad that I don’t have any more kids in school! Oh wait, I do! My youngest son started his first year of Law School two weeks ago. My other two children have both completed Master’s degrees and on their way to outstanding careers. Yeah, I’m a bit proud!

When I read this week’s theme, I just couldn’t get the classic song Don’t Know Much out of my head. Here’s my list in tribute to that Sam Cooke classic.

The Don’t Know Much, Back To School Top 14

Don’t know much about  . . .

History. I really liked European history in school. American history, not so much. So here are a few books that feature those things I didn’t pay attention to in class.

Washington’s Lady by Nancy Moser (pre and post-Revolutionary War)

Burning Sky by Lori Benton (post-Revolutionary War)

The Sentinels of Andersonville by Tracy Groot (Civil War)

Though Waters Roar by Lynn Austin (Civil War, Women’s Suffrage, Prohibition)

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Biology. When I think of biology, I think of the birds and bees. When I think of the birds and bees, I think great romances. Here are some that fit that title.

Crazy Little Thing Called Love by Beth K. Vogt

The Dandelion Field by Kathryn Springer

The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck

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Science Books. Science? Yick! I glazed over in my HS Chemistry class and I didn’t even attempt Physics. Here are four novels that involve science but didn’t make me glaze over!

Bad Ground by Dale Cramer (mining)

Critical Reaction by Todd M. Johnson (nuclear energy)

Maximal Reserve by Sam Batterman (petroleum exploration)

Undetected by Dee Henderson (sonar)

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The French I Took. This may be because I took Spanish. LOL! The only French word I can say with confidence is oui! These books set in France deserve a definite oui, oui!

My Brother’s Crown by Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould (17th century)

Flame of Resistance by Tracy Groot (WWII)

Two Crosses by Elizabeth Musser (Algerian Civil War)

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What are some of your favorite school books?

Audiobook Review: Traces of Guilt

10 Aug

51atDo0oG9L._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Evie Blackwell loves her life as an Illinois State Police detective . . . mostly. She’s very skilled at investigations and has steadily moved up through the ranks. She would like to find Mr. Right, but she has a hard time imagining how marriage could work, considering the demands of her job.

Gabriel Thane is a lifetime resident of Carin County and now its sheriff, a job he loves. Gabe is committed to upholding the law and cares deeply for the residents he’s sworn to protect. He too would like to find a lifetime companion, a marriage like his parents have.

When Evie arrives in Carin, Illinois, it’s to help launch a new task force dedicated to reexamining unsolved crimes across the state. Spearheading this trial run, Evie will work with the sheriff’s department on a couple of its most troubling missing-persons cases. As she reexamines old evidence to pull out a few tenuous new leads, she unearths a surprising connection . . . possibly to a third cold case. Evie’s determined to solve the cases before she leaves Carin County, and Sheriff Thane, along with his family, will be key to those answers.

 

 

imagesDee Henderson is the author of 14 best-selling novels, including the acclaimed O’Malley series and the Uncommon Heroes series. As a leader in the inspirational romantic suspense category, her books have won or been nominated for several prestigious industry awards, including the RWA’s RITA Award, the Christy Award, the ECPA Gold Medallion, the Holt Medallion, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Golden Quill. Dee is a lifelong resident of Illinois and is active online. Visit her at http://www.deehenderson.com.

 

My Impressions:

I have kind of been on a Dee Henderson kick lately. She has filled my morning walks with interesting characters, excellent writing and intriguing plots. In Traces of Guilt, Henderson introduces readers to new characters while including old favorites from previous books. This book is more mystery than suspense, since the crimes are cold cases, having taken place years before the present action. As part of a new task force put together by Governor-elect Bliss, Evie Blackwell uses vacation time to get a headstart on the investigations. Rural Carin County has not one, but three for her to puzzle over. Joining her in the investigation are friend Ann Falcon and Sheriff Gabriel Thane. All aspects of the cases are explored including likely and unlikely motives and suspects.

Traces of Guilt is not a fast-paced suspense novel. It is more of a methodical uncovering of layers involved with missing persons cases. Through intuition and professional expertise, the investigators get to the bottom of the mysteries. I liked this aspect of the book — a plausible look at real-life police work. Characters do spend a lot of time thinking (and in some cases over-thinking) relationships — their own and others. I found that a bit tedious, especially since I was listening to the book. That’s a disadvantage in an audiobook. It’s harder to skim over the boring parts. 😉 Fortunately, I found those to be few. I also liked Evie Blackwell and Gabriel Thane. Evie is much less high maintenance than some of Henderson’s female characters and Gabriel, while solicitous, is more believable in his actions than the long-suffering males in some of Henderson’s novels.

This audiobook was a good choice for my morning exercise and I look forward to future books in the series.

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(I purchased the audiobook from Audible. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Audiobook Review: Taken

22 Jul

51L8ur9medL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_An investigator who knows tragic loss firsthand,
and his new client, missing far too long…

Abducted at the age of sixteen and coerced into assisting the Jacoby crime family, Shannon Bliss has finally found a way out. She desperately wants to resume some semblance of normal life, but she also knows she has some unfinished business to attend to. She might have enough evidence to put her captors behind bars for a very long time.

When Shannon contacts private investigator Matthew Dane, a former cop, to help her navigate her reentry into society, he quickly discovers that gaining her freedom doesn’t mean her troubles are over. If the Jacoby family learns she is still alive, they’ll stop at nothing to silence her.

If justice is to be done, and if Shannon’s life is ever to get on track again, Matthew will need to discover exactly what happened to her–even if it means stirring up a hornet’s nest of secrets.

 

imagesDee Henderson is the author of 14 best-selling novels, including the acclaimed O’Malley series and the Uncommon Heroes series. As a leader in the inspirational romantic suspense category, her books have won or been nominated for several prestigious industry awards, including the RWA’s RITA Award, the Christy Award, the ECPA Gold Medallion, the Holt Medallion, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Golden Quill. Dee is a lifelong resident of Illinois and is active online. Visit her at http://www.deehenderson.com.

 

My Impressions:

In my opinion, Dee Henderson’s books have come a long way since her O’Malley series. Still big favorites of her fans, I have found from online reviews and discussions that her later novels have been met with mixed feelings. Taken is billed as romantic suspense, and from the above blurb you would think that it is fast-paced with elements of danger. Well, I really didn’t find that to be the case. All of the action takes place before the book even begins. And while main character Shannon Bliss is in some danger from her former captors, she is well-protected and never comes within reach of them. So, does this mean I didn’t like the book. Absolutely not! I really, really liked it because it showed the rest of the story. Taken explores what happens after the rescue — a time when the trauma finally takes root, a time when normal really isn’t.

Main character Matthew Dane is experienced in the handling of kidnap victims. His own daughter, Becky, was once one. When approached by Shannon Bliss, the victim of 11 years of captivity, he sets up an elaborate network of professionals and friends to ease Shannon’s reentry into normal life. I found the process very intriguing. Henderson does an excellent job of detailing the pain-staking work that needs to be done to ensure the physical and emotional well-being of a victim. Taken is to me a mystery, as the past is uncovered to reveal just what happened to Shannon and why. The suspense comes not from car chases or narrow escapes, but from the unfolding of motives. I listened to the audiobook and the timing and narration were very good.

If you are expecting a novel in the same vein as Henderson’s earliest novels, then you may be disappointed. But if you want to immerse yourself into a detailed and articulate novel of after the crime, then Taken is for you.

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(I purchased the audio version from Audible. All opinion expressed are mine alone.)

 

Book Review: Undetected

4 Jan

518blucGMbL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_When asked what he does for a living . . .

Commander Mark Bishop is deliberately low-key: “I’m in the Navy”. But commanding the ballistic missile submarine USS Nevada, keeping her crew trained and alert during ninety-day submerged patrols, and being prepared to launch weapons on valid presidential orders, carries a burden of command like few other jobs in the military. Mark Bishop is a man who accepts that responsibility, and handles it well. And at a time when tensions are escalating around the Pacific Rim, the Navy is glad to have him.

Mark wants someone to come home to after sea patrols. The woman he has in mind is young, with a lovely smile, and very smart. She’s a civilian, yet she understands the U.S. Navy culture. And he has a strong sense that life with her would never be boring. But she may be too deep in her work to see the potential in a relationship with him.

Gina Gray would love to be married. She has always envisioned her life that way. A breakup she didn’t see coming, though, has her focusing all her attention on what she does best–ocean science research. She’s on the cusp of a major breakthrough, and she needs Mark Bishop’s perspective and help. Because what she told the Navy she’s figured out is only the beginning. If she’s right, submarine warfare is about to enter a new and dangerous chapter.

 

imagesDee Henderson is the author of 14 best-selling novels, including the acclaimed O’Malley series and the Uncommon Heroes series. As a leader in the inspirational romantic suspense category, her books have won or been nominated for several prestigious industry awards, including the RWA’s RITA Award, the Christy Award, the ECPA Gold Medallion, the Holt Medallion, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Golden Quill. Dee is a lifelong resident of Illinois and is active online. Visit her at http://www.deehenderson.com.

 

My Impressions:

Dee Henderson has long been a very popular author in the Christian romantic suspense genre. Some of my friends have devoured her early books. The last few novels she has produced are a bit of a departure from those first books. To me the writing style is better and the characters more complex. While not a fan of the O’Malley series, I really enjoyed Full Disclosure and Unspoken — the complexity of the plots and the multi-layered and unique heroines. I have mixed feelings about Undetected. And while it had some negatives for me, its positives out-weighed them making this book a recommended read.

First let me outline the positives. Undetected is about submarines and sonar. It’s very tech-heavy, yet this reader who is generally clueless when it comes to science (I tend to just skim any parts with science or math), really enjoyed learning about the ins and outs of this fascinating subject. Dee made it very accessible to me. The novel also provides a great look at military life, in particular the Navy. The men and women who serve and the families they leave behind when out on patrol should be commended. This is a tough life for relationship survival, and I loved that Dee brought those struggles to light. There is also a very strong faith message in Undetected. God is definitely in control and works everything out to accomplish His plans. The main character, Gina, is burdened by her giftedness, but she learns that God puts together people and situations to accomplish even greater things than she could do alone.

Now for the negatives. The book is too long, in fact about 100 pages too long. There is a love triangle that should have been streamlined. I would have tossed in the towel if this had not been a review book. I spoke with others that did in fact put the book down. The romance was too polite, and frankly, unbelievable. It also doesn’t really take off until the end of the book. The same goes for the suspense. I kept waiting for something to happen. Again the very end of the book was the point of action. And while I liked the ending, I am afraid that too many readers will be fatigued by the time the real story begins.

So why recommend this book? The plot points of technology and the Navy are very interesting. The characters are unusual to say the least, and the writing is strong. Just make sure you stick with this one (that was everyone’s advice to me).

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(Thanks to Bethany House for a review copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

Book Review: Unspoken

24 Feb

211713Charlotte Graham is at the center of the most famous kidnapping in Chicago history.

The task force of Fbi and local cops found her two abductors, killed them, rescued her, but it took four very long years. The fact she was found less than three miles from her home, had been there the entire time, haunts them. She’s changed her identity, found a profession she loves, and rebuilt her life.

She’s never said a word–to the cops, to her doctors, to family–about those four years.

A family legacy has brought her back to Chicago where a reporter is writing a book about the kidnapping. The cops who worked the case are cooperating with him. Her options are limited: Hope the reporter doesn’t find the full truth, or break her silence about what happened. And her silence is what has protected her family for years.

Bryce Bishop doesn’t know her past, he only knows she has coins to sell from her grandfather’s estate–and that the Fbi director for the Chicago office made the introduction. The more he gets to know Charlotte, the more interested he becomes, an interest encouraged by those closest to her. But nothing else is working in his favor–she’s decided she is single for life, she struggles with her faith, and she’s willing to forego a huge inheritance to keep her privacy. She’s not giving him much of an opening to work with.

Charlotte wants to trust him. She needs to tell him what happened. Because a crime cops thought was solved, has only opened another chapter. . .

5108Dee Henderson is a leader in the inspirational romantic suspense category. Her books have won or been nominated for several prestigious industry awards including RWA’s RITA Award, the Christy Award, the ECPA Gold Medallion, the Holt Medallion, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Golden Quill. She is a lifelong resident of Illinois.

My Impressions:

Dee Henderson has long been a favorite author among the members of my book club, By The Book. We last selected Full Disclosure for discussion. It was somewhat of a departure from her previous works and had mixed reviews across the blogosphere. But my group liked it, so we were not hesitant to choose Unspoken for our February discussion. Except for a few ehs due mostly to the descriptions of coins, Unspoken was well received.

The plot of Unspoken revolves around the relationship between Charlotte Graham, a kidnapping victim turned multi-millionaire and Bryce Bishop, a rare coin dealer. Charlotte approaches Bryce to sell the vast coin collection inherited from her grandfather. Intrigued by Charlotte, Bryce wants to get to know her better and perhaps get behind the barriers she has erected to protect herself from further hurt.

Unspoken does contain a plot thread filled with suspense, but it is the complex relationship between Charlotte and Bryce that kept me reading. Charlotte is deeply wounded, yet determined to live her life on her own terms. She is a believer, but doesn’t really trust God. Bryce lives a life of quiet, yet firm faith. His life models Christ’s love. Charlotte slowly comes to trust Bryce and, in turn, God. I especially liked Henderson’s depiction of Bryce’s prayer life — something more than one of our members commented on. As in Full Disclosure, Henderson gives us a difficult female character and a strong, yet gentle and devoted male character who is consistent and determined to woo her. Bryce is a powerful picture of God’s love for us — never-failing, unrelenting and unconditional.

I really liked Unspoken and believe it is the best book yet written by Dee Henderson. I am eagerly awaiting her next book, Undetected, due out in April, featuring Bryce’s brother, Mark Bishop.

Highly Recommended.

(Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for a review copy. The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

To purchase a copy of this book, click on the image below.