Friday, May 14, 2010

Library Day- BONUS!

I have a had a wonderfully cool thing happen to me. I was selected as a Blogging book reviewer for WaterBrook Press, and they are going to be sending free books for me to read!
Isn't that cool?

Here's my first WaterBrook Press book review:

Indivisible by Kristen Heitzmann

From the cover: Battling his own personal demons, Police Chief Jonah Westfall has experienced the dark side of life and is committed to eradicating it. When a pair of raccoons are found mutilated in Redford, Colorado, Jonah investigates the gruesome act, seeking to unmask the perpetrator before the crime escalates and destroys the tranquility of his small mountain town. Jonah fights for answers- and his fragile sobriety- amid a rising drug threat and never-ending conflict with Tia Manning, a formidable childhood friend with whom he has more than a passing history. But he can't penetrate every would or secret- especially one fueled by a love and guilt teetering on madness.

From best-selling author Kristen Heitzmann comes a spell-binding tale of severed connections and the consequences of life lived alone.

I enjoyed this psychological thriller.

The characters are believable & interesting, and the plot moved quickly & consistently. I'd give the book 3 and 1/2 out of 5 stars. I think this author has potential and would be willing to read another suspense tale written by her. She has some growing to do in her skills as an author, but she's on the right path and has made a good beginning. I look forward to seeing her develop and grow in her plot construction, suspense building and characterization.

I admit that I figured out who the perpetrator was and why their obsession led to the behavior somewhere around page 77; however, I was drawn into the story and felt compelled to discover how it all worked out and how the relationships between the characters developed.

The characters were sympathetic- people I genuinely cared about and wanted to know more- and the situation itself, though tragic, was fascinating. I appreciated the frank appraisal of addiction and lust from a Christian author and thought she did an excellent job of portraying how obsessions, tragedy and miscommunication bring destruction. She didn't glamorize the dark side of life, nor did she sugar-coat what it is like to live an obedient life-style.

It was delightful to see the characters I came to care for rise out of the ashes of their past to soar into new life and possibilities.

Really, my biggest complaint had to do with the story arc and suspense management. The plot's suspense does not rise in a graceful story arc. Instead it climbs a bit, gets tangled with too many details, and remains around the same level until towards the end when there's a sudden spike. Then the denouement (or releasing of tension) is rather quick, with a surprising and *almost* unbelievable conclusion to the tension and angst between the two main characters. Finally, the termination of the conflict with the perpetrator wraps up almost too quickly, but with decided satisfaction.

Overall, a good book, but not as strong as it could have be after this author has the opportunity to grow and develop her skills more!

READ the first chapter here:
This book was provided for review by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group

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