Tag Archives: Nancy Mehl

By The Book’s 2019 Selections

1 Jan

Happy New Year! On the first of the month I usually share my book club’s selection. But since today is the first day of a brand new year, I thought it fitting to share all the books we are reading in 2019. There is a mix of genres — romance, suspense, Biblical, historical — something for everyone. We would love for you to join us. Check out our FB page.

 

January — Chosen People by Robert Whitlow
February — Five Brides by Eva Marie Everson 
March — Delayed Justice by Cara Putman
April — The Sky Above Us by Sarah Sundin
May — Mind Games by Nancy Mehl
June — Almost Home by Valerie Fraser Luesse
July — The Curse of Misty Wayfair by Jaime Jo Wright
August — The Memory House by Rachel Hauck
September — The Cost of Betrayal by Dee Henderson/Lynette Eason/Dani Pettrey
October — Judah’s Wife by Angela Hunt 
November — Crisis Shot by Janice Cantore
December — Christmas book

 

 

 

 

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Top 10 Tuesday — Best of 2018

1 Jan

I am bowled over by the number of excellent books I read in 2018! It was very, very, very hard to come up with a list of the best, let alone trying to limit it to just 10! So I cheated (of course) and made two Top 10 Lists — one contemporary and one historical. And before you say but, but . . . I know that three of the books on the historical list are dual timelines, but without the historical component, the book would not have existed. There is also plenty of suspense and romance — really something for everyone on this list. Those with an asterisk were book club books that got unanimous thumbs up! I hope you find one or two (or all) that will pique your interest.

Head over to That Artsy Reader Girl to discover other bloggers’ best of the best lists.

 

Top 10 Contemporary Novels of 2018

Before I Saw You by Amy K. Sorrells

Chosen People by Robert Whitlow

Falling for You by Becky Wade

Lead Me Home by Amy K. Sorrells

*The Masterpiece by Francine Rivers

Miles from Where We Started by Cynthia Ruchti

Mind Games by Nancy Mehl

My Hands Came Away Red by Lisa McKay

Saturday Night Supper Club by Carla Laureano

Where Hope Begins by Catherine West

 

Top 10 Historical Novels of 2018

Hidden Among The Stars by Melanie Dobson

*The House of Foster Hill by Jaime Jo Wright

Lady of A Thousand Treasures by Sandra Byrd

*Missing Isaac by Valerie Fraser Luesse

The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond by Jaime Jo Wright

A Refuge Assured by Jocelyn Green

A Rumored Fortune by Joanna Davidson Politano 

Sons of Blackbird Mountain by Joanne Bischof

Shelter of The Most High by Connilyn Cossette

When The Heart Sings by Liz Tolsma

 

What book was your favorite in 2018?

Book Review (+Giveaway!): Mind Games

13 Dec

About the Book

Book: Mind Games

Author: Nancy Mehl

Genre: Suspense

Release Date: December, 2018

Publisher: Bethany House

FBI Behavioral Analyst Kaely Quinn’s methods may be highly unorthodox, but her talent is undeniable. She’s done her best to establish a new life for herself after being demoted and transferred to St. Louis when a reporter revealed she’s the daughter of an infamous serial killer. But when that same reporter claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders, ending with Kaely’s, it seems her old life has followed her.

When a body is found that fits the poem’s morbid predictions, Kaely and her new partner, Special Agent Noah Hunter, are forced to move past his skepticism of her approach and work together to unravel the deadly riddle.

With a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely are tested to their limits to catch the murderer before anyone else, including Kaely, is killed.

Click Here to purchase.

 

My Impressions:

Wow! That is my first impression of Mind Games by Nancy Mehl. From the opening paragraph I was hooked on this psychological thriller. It is definitely going on my best of 2018 list. Great characters, taut plotting, and a premise that is as clever as you will find make this one highly recommended!

What is so great about Mind Games? First, the premise of the daughter of a serial killer who becomes a profiler and then has to find a killer targeting her through copy-cat crimes — that is definitely a mind-bending mind game! The plot twists and turns and keeps everyone, including the reader on his/her toes. I had my own list of suspects that constantly changed. Like main character Kaely, I didn’t trust anyone. Mehl did a great job of making everyone look guilty. LOL! Second, main character Kaely is intriguing and complex. Admired, feared, and even ridiculed within the FBI, she is a force to be reckoned with even as she uses unorthodox methods to get into the heads of UNSUBS. I loved her analytical mind and her desire for justice and truth. And while she had a father who betrayed her and friends who abused her trust, she stands firm in her belief in the goodness of God, even as evil seems to win at every turn. Supporting characters are well-written too, making this novel have a depth not always found in plot-driven suspense. I found the references to the many FBI cases a clear clue into the exhaustive research Mehl had to have done to write this book. While there is a definite creep-factor going on in Mind Games, it was never graphic or gory. And the best part of all? This is just book 1 in a series. Yay! I am so looking forward to working more cases with Kaely Quinn!

Mind Games is on my book club’s 2019 reading list. I can’t wait to get the discussion going. My group is going to love it!

Highly recommended.

Audience: adults.

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

 


 

About the Author

Nancy Mehl (www.nancymehl.com) is the author of more than thirty books, including the Road to Kingdom, Finding Sanctuary, and Defenders of Justice series. She received the ACFW Mystery Book of the Year Award in 2009. She has a background in social work and is a member of ACFW and RWA. She writes from her home in Missouri, where she lives with her husband, Norman, and their Puggle, Watson. She is part of The Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com, along with several other popular suspense authors. She is also very active on Facebook.

 

Guest Post from Nancy

Writing Mind Games is a dream come true. I’ve been interested in FBI profiling for years. I’ve read about it, studied it, and watched every TV special I could find on the subject. So when the chance finally came to write the book I’ve always wanted to write, I jumped at it. Thankfully, through the help of another writer, I was hooked up with a retired FBI profiler. I was so excited. Until I found out I had almost everything wrong. Yes, I had some understanding about profiling, but I knew nothing about the FBI and how it works.

First of all, the FBI doesn’t call the men and women who profile criminals, profilers. They’re called Behavioral Analysts. The plot for Mind Games had my analyst running around the country solving crimes while she was stationed in St. Louis. Uh, no. Behavioral analysts do travel, but they all work out of Quantico in Virginia. So…I rewrote.

There were ways around my conundrum, but one solution led to more and more problems. We finally worked through them. Then I spent the next few months learning acronyms. CIRG, CJIS, NCAVC, HRT, UNSUB, CNU, THU, ViCap, CODIS, SWAT, ERTU, OPU, THRU, ERT… Well, the list goes on and on. The FBI is made up of many specialized units. And a plethora of acronyms, it seems.

I rewrote Mind Games three times before my source said we were good to go.

If you assume I’m out of the woods now, you’d be wrong. I haven’t had the nerve to open up the manuscript I sent her for book two in my Kaely Quinn Profiler series. I figured I had Fire Storm right but… Well, I can tell from her email comments I’ll be doing more rewriting. Sigh.

So is it worth it? A resounding yes! I love learning, and as long as my analyst friend hangs in with me (she has the patience of Job), I’ll keep at it.

I hope you enjoy Mind Games. It’s edgy but fun. Kaely Quinn is a quirky character. She was thrown out of Quantico because her version of profiling is… Well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 11

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, December 11

The Lit Addict, December 11

amandainpa, December 11

A Reader’s Brain, December 12

Daysong Reflections, December 12

Livin’ Lit, December 12

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 13

By The Book, December 13

Lighthouse Academy, December 13

Multifarious, December 14

Jennifer Sienes: Where Crisis and Christ Collide, December 14

Splashes of Joy, December 14

Back Porch Reads, December 15

Real World Bible Study, December 15

Robin is Bookish, December 15

Janices book reviews, December 15

C Jane Read, December 16

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 16

The Becca Files, December 16

Bigreadersite, December 16

Quiet Quilter, December 17

Margaret Kazmierczak, December 17

Godly Book Reviews, December 17

All-of-a-kind Mom, December 18

Just the Write Escape, December 18

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, December 18

Simple Harvest Reads, December 19 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Mary Hake, December 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 19

For the Love of Literature, December 20

Remembrancy, December 20

Inklings and notions, December 20

Carpe Diem, December 20

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 21

Pause for Tales, December 21

A Baker’s Perspective, December 21

Have A Wonderful Day, December 22

Book by Book, December 22

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 22

Bibliophile Reviews, December 23

To Everything a Season, December 23

Southern Gal Loves to Read, December 23

Cafinated Reads, December 24

Texas Book-aholic, December 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 24

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Nancy is giving away a grand prize of a copy of Mind Games and the three books in Nancy’s Defenders of Justice series, plus a $20 Starbucks gift card!

Two additional winners will also receive a copy of Mind Games!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/d73b/mind-games-celebration-tour-giveaway

If You Liked The View from Rainshadow Bay . . .

31 Oct

My book club loves suspense. So, how is it that we have only read two books by Colleen Coble?! After our discussion of The View from Rainshadow Bay (the first of the Lavender Tides series), we plan to remedy that issue. A copy of book two, The House at Saltwater Point, is making the rounds right now, and then we are on to book 3, Secrets at Cedar Cabin, for a future discussion. We loved the characters, the fast-paced action, and the images the setting created.

So what do we read while waiting? Here are my recommendations for fans of Coble and suspense. Each one delivers the suspense we love and takes place in a beautiful setting.

 

Dark Deception by Nancy Mehl

Kate O’Brien’s quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she’s been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn’t the murderer, she’s subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis.

The Real Enemy by Kathy Herman

Brill Jessup becomes the first female police chief in Sophie Trace, Tennessee and is riding on the credentials of a stellar eighteen-year-career on the Memphis Police Force. She may be a pro at finding clues, but she ignores the obvious in her personal life. Her husband, Kurt, is weighed down by her unrelenting anger as he struggles to let God redeem the stupidest mistake he ever made. Brill hides behind her badge and her bitterness, deciding that moving her family away from Memphis is the only change she needs to make.

Before she has time to unpack her boxes, people start disappearing. Lots of them. To complicate matters, a local legend has many residents believing that the cause is unearthly — tied to the “red shadows,” or spirits of the departed Cherokee who once inhabited the land. While Brill draws on all of her experience and instinct to solve the case, she must confront an enemy that threatens everything she holds dear — one that cannot be stopped with a badge and a gun.

A Vast And Gracious Tide by Lisa Carter

A wounded veteran and the police chief’s daughter must work together to bring a killer to justice

Caden Wallis lost friends, his girlfriend, and even his leg to the ravages of war. He arrives on the Outer Banks broken and still reeling, struggling to make peace with his new life.

McKenna Dockery has been stuck in limbo since her fiancé died three years ago. Now, when the handsome yet heartbroken Caden arrives at her doorstep, she starts to wonder if there may be hope for her heart after all . . .

But no sooner do they meet than a man is found murdered on McKenna’s property – and Caden is the prime suspect. The two must learn to trust each other, or no one will be safe in the tangled web of conspiracy, greed, and deceit lurking in the tidal marshlands of the Outer Banks.

Top 10 Tuesday — Halloween Randomness

30 Oct

As a blogger/reviewer of Inspirational and Clean Fiction it is a challenge to come up with a Halloween theme each year. I’ve racked my brain this year and have come up with not much of anything. I have already done Halloween Cozies, Spooky Christian Fiction, and even Reformation Reading. Yes I was reaching with that one. 😉 So this year I am opting for Halloween Randomness — covers that remind me of October days, covers that are ominous, and some good old fashioned supernatural fiction. I have read a few of these books; others are at the top of my TBR. I hope you find one you will love!

Be sure to head over to That Artsy Reader Girl where I am sure you will find some Halloween fun much more clever than mine!

Halloween Randomness

 

Fall-ish Covers

The Cumberland Bride by Shannon McNear

The Light Before Day by Suzanne Woods Fisher

When The Heart Sings by Liz Tolsma

 

Ominous Covers

Hidden Peril by Irene Hannon

Lethal Target by Janice Cantore

Mind Games by Nancy Mehl

 

Good Old Fashioned Supernatural Thrillers

The Windy Ridge Legal Thriller Series by Rachel Dylan

 

If You Liked Beneath The Surface . . .

31 Aug

My book club read the first book in Lynn H. Blackburn‘s new romantic suspense series, Beneath The Surface. The consensus was we liked it. Book 2, In Too Deep, releases in October, and some of our members have already put in a pre-order. If you read it and liked it and need something to tide you over until October 😉 , here are a few recommendations.

 

Dark Deception by Nancy Mehl

Kate O’Brien’s quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she’s been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn’t the murderer, she’s subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis.

Deadly Proof by Rachel Dylan

In the biggest case of her career, attorney Kate Sullivan is tapped as lead counsel to take on Mason Pharmaceutical because of a corporate cover-up related to its newest drug. After a whistleblower dies, Kate knows the stakes are much higher than her other lawsuits.

Former Army Ranger turned private investigator Landon James is still haunted by mistakes made while serving overseas. Trying to forget the past, he is hired by Kate to look into the whistleblower’s allegation and soon suspects that the company may be engaging in a dangerous game for profit. He also soon finds himself falling for this passionate and earnest young lawyer.

Determined not to make the same mistakes, he’s intent on keeping Kate safe, but as the case deepens, it appears someone is willing to risk everything — even murder — to keep the case from going to trial.

Shadows of The Past by Patricia Bradley

Psychology professor and criminal profiler Taylor Martin prides herself on being able to solve any crime, except the one she wants most desperately to solve – the disappearance of her father twenty years ago. When she finally has a lead on his whereabouts, Taylor returns home to Logan Point, Mississippi, to investigate. But as she is stalking the truth about the past, someone is stalking her.

Nick Sinclair pens mystery novels for a living, but the biggest mystery to him is how he can ever get over the death of his wife–a tragedy he believes he could have prevented. With his estranged brother the only family he has left, Nick sets out to find him. But when he crosses paths with Taylor, all he seems to find is trouble.

 

Book Review: Dark Deception

4 Jan

Kate O’Brien’s quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she’s been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn’t the murderer, she’s subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis.

 

Nancy Mehl lives in Missouri, with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She’s authored thirty books and is currently at work on a new FBI suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.

All of Nancy’s novels have an added touch – something for your spirit as well as your soul. “I welcome the opportunity to share my faith through my writing,” Nancy says. “It’s a part of me and of everything I think or do. God is number one in my life. I wouldn’t be writing at all if I didn’t believe that this is what He’s called me to do. I hope everyone who reads my books will walk away with the most important message I can give them: God is good, and He loves you more than you can imagine. He has a good plan especially for your life, and there is nothing you can’t overcome with His help.”

You can find out more about Nancy by visiting her Web site at: http://www.nancymehl.com. She also is active on the Suspense Sisters: http://www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com and on FaceBook!

 

My Impressions:

Nancy Mehl is a favorite of mine. She always delivers heart-pounding suspense paired with sweet romance. In Dark Deception, the second book in her Defenders of Justice series, Mehl has upped the ante. This novel is one of the more twisting, turning books I have read in a long time. If you like non-stop action, this one is for you. Recommended!

As the only survivor of a serial killer, Kate O’Brien is in witness protection. Still reeling from her ordeal, new DNA evidence has cleared her sister’s murderer. Deputy US Marshall Tony DeLuca was Kate’s protector during the trial and now, six years later, he vows to protect her again. But danger awaits the pair as they struggle to survive.

The action starts at page one and continues for one long breath-holding read. Chilling and creepy are apt words to describe the crimes and the killer. But Dark Deception never lapses into graphic detail. Mehl does a great job of engaging the imagination of the reader without lurid details. I for one was glad of that. There was enough to keep the pages turning without causing nightmares when I finally put it down. 😉 Main characters Kate and Tony have good chemistry, but the romance never seemed rushed or unbelievable. Secondary characters kept this reader guessing — just what are their motives? There are a number of seemingly random threads that the author ties together to provide some good aha moments. I especially liked the secondary plot involving a policeman named Leon. I won’t spoil anything, but that storyline really added depth to the novel. While the bad guys truly are bad, the good guys are on varying faith journeys — very realistic.

Dark Deception is book 2 in a series, but is easily read as a standalone. I have not read book 1, Fatal Frost, but need to get on that ASAP. Especially since book 3, Blind Betrayal, will be released in April 2018!

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE.

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