Let Justice Descend – Lisa Black

Detective’s Jack Renner & Thomas Riley are back again along with forensic investigator Maggie Gardiner, as the trio investigates the cruel and calculated death of a sitting US Senator, Ohio Republican Diane Cragin, by electrocution, two days before the national elections. Long accused by her Democrat opponent of accepting kickbacks, the investigating team is quite surprised when they find a hidden safe containing close to a million dollars in cash. Known to be corrupt himself, opponent Joey Green becomes a quick suspect. 

A visit to the Republican Offices, features an unwanted interaction with Cleveland Herald reporter Lori Russo, who has been determined to discover the identity of the killer of a series of vigilante murders – the killings of some of the countries’ most ruthless criminals – that occurred over the last several months. As Jack has recently been named the lead investigator of those killings, and unbeknownst to anyone other than Maggie (or we readers), is the perpetrator of said crimes, he has no desire to be anywhere near her. As she begins to pester him with questions, he is able to re-direct the conversation, but not before learning of her plans to visit some old murder sites in Arizona. Concerned, Jack vows to keep an eye on her. 

As the investigative team dives into the political arena looking for answers, it becomes quickly apparent that everyone has an agenda, as well as potential motives to have killed Senator Cragin, as everyone interviewed points the finger at someone else. A visit to the EPA indicates that Diane may have been involved in obtaining a contract for a less than competent company to renovate the local water intake facility, with potentially deadly consequences. A seeming heart attack in another high-profile individual leads the team in yet another direction as the deaths begin to multiply, and the investigation appears to come full circle, with a completely unexpected ending…or not…

I’m very late in getting this review completed – however it seems quite apropos given the political machinations taking place in our world today. But, for me, this was a great mystery with some unique characters, a Dexter like detective, the woman who is drawn to him, and a deep, yet telling look into the political world that has become so difficult to stomach lately, all of which leaves me wanting more!

I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.  Do you love to read?? Visit netgalley.com and start reviewing books today!!

Shatter The Night – Emily Littlejohn

Monsters…witches…it’s Halloween night in Cedar Valley, Colorado, and since becoming a cop, Detective Gemma Monroe has always dreaded the season.  But this year is different, as she and her fiancé Brody are trick or treating with their toddler Grace for the first time. With the evening winding down, Gemma wants to make one more stop – a quick visit to retired Judge Caleb Montgomery. A close friend of her grandfathers, Caleb has long been a friend of Gemma’s family, and has asked to see her. 

When Gemma arrives, Caleb hands her a package of letters – death threats that he has received every few weeks, beginning after he stepped down from the bench six months ago. He describes a familiarity to the writing, but he is unable to place why. So, he has turned to Gemma for assistance. His fear, although he hides it well, makes Gemma uneasy.  Shortly after Gemma and Brody leave for home, an explosion lights up the night, coming from the direction of Caleb’s office. 

Gemma immediately returns to the scene to investigate the incident, her worst fears realized. Now more determined than ever to avenge Caleb, the investigation flies into high gear and Gemma, her partner Finn and the rest of the team begin to research individuals that might have wanted Caleb dead. But after a long and illustrious career on the bench, the list is long…too long.

As Gemma & Finn dig deeper into the past, a local bank is robbed. Inexplicably, an unarmed guard is shot to death by the thief as he is leaving the scene. Watching the camera replays of the incident, Gemma sees the shooter lean down and whisper something to the wounded guard, but he dies before ever regaining consciousness. Even more puzzling, the gun recovered from the scene is a Japanese, and a collector’s item. A visit to a military historical expert yields an unexpected clue – and a sad story of a soldier who returned from war a changed man.  Gemma realizes she has a copycat killer on her hands, and that the killing has just started….

This novel was another delightful & unexpected find via the Netgalley site.  I was sure I had the killer pegged early on (I was wrong) and I thought the book was following a rather predictable course (it wasn’t) and still I culdn’t put it down. I love the characters of Gemma & Finn, and there are some great peripheral characters as well that I hope continue to make appearances in future novels. Best part of all – this is too part of a series! If you’ve read any of my reviews, you know how much I LOVE to see my favorite characters return in future books! Easily read as a stand-alone, but I have some back reading to catch up on now!  A fabulous read! 

I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.  Do you love to read?? Visit netgalley.com and start reviewing books today!!

Far Gone – Danielle Girard

Hannah Visser is a young teenager who has just arrived to babysit an infant when she is witness to the parents being shot by a lone gunman. Out of sight at the time of the killer’s entrance, she takes refuge in a closet, where she sees the killer approach the baby’s bassinet, before saying something and leaving. Terrified, and high on pills she’s just obtained from a dealer, she thinks she recognizes the voice of the shooter – she’s heard it before, but here? Fearful for the infant’s life and her own, she grabs the baby, the homeowner’s purse and keys, and heads to safety, wherever she can find it. 

Kylie Milliard is the lone Detective on the Hagen, NC police force, and chances to answer the 911 call that comes in from a breathless female reporting the murder. As she and fellow officers’ race to the address, dreading the scene that lies ahead, Kylie realizes she never got the name of the caller, nor her role in the discovery of the bodies.  Upon reaching the scene, they find the female victim clinging to life, and they also quickly realize the couple’s infant daughter is missing. When Kylie notices a smear of blood on the bassinet, she’s hopeful for a suspect, but the DNA result just creates more questions. 

Lily Baker is the nurse working in the small ER clinic that night, along with Dr. Visser, Hannah’s father. It’s a busy evening, made even more so by the arrival of the shooting victim, who dies shortly after arrival despite their best efforts. Lily is still recovering emotionally from a years old ordeal of being held captive for several months, with only scattered memories of the event. As she steps outside to take a 10-minute break, she notices a car in the lot with a woman inside – the woman then lays a bundle on the asphalt and asks Lily to care for it – it’s a baby. 

As Hannah struggles to find safety, Kylie investigates an ever confusing and heartbreaking case, with an unexpected and painful connection to Lily. Told from the perspectives of these three women, this book is guaranteed to hook you from the first page and will keep you up well into the night. It wasn’t until I completed this book that I learned it’s actually the 2nd in a series which goes into much greater detail regarding Lily & Kylies respective pasts, so you can bet I’ll be reading that novel next!  I’m a big fan of Ms. Girard’s ‘Dr. Schwartzman’ series, and I’ll be adding this series to my must read list as well!  Great read!!

I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.  Do you love to read?? Visit netgalley.com and start reviewing books today!!