Tuesday, September 5, 2023

FACING THE ENEMY by DiAnn Mills, Reviewed by Rebecca Maney #ReleaseDay

"It should have been you. Resign from the FBI immediately or face another funeral."

"The tears. The memories. A stolen future. A gentle smile. A quiet voice . . . If only I'd seen the SUV coming." After barely reuniting with her estranged brother, FBI Special Agent Risa Jacobs is both devastated and enraged by his death; a hit and run incident that apparently (according to the threatening note) had been orchestrated specifically for her demise.

To protect those in close proximity, Risa campaigns for a leave of absence, while unknown to anyone else but her boss, continues to work the details of the case under the radar. Severing ties with her long-time partner Gage Patterson was difficult, he wouldn't understand, but Risa was not about to compromise his safety or the safety of her remaining family members by presuming the role of an agent. Utilizing her doctorate, she sheds her law enforcement persona and dons a college professorship hat, teaching a creative writing class . . . never anticipating that one student's short story assignment was destined to break her brother's murder case wide open. Risa needed Gage.

Swirling with details, overlaps, and intersections this story is dizzying in depth, leaving Gage and Risa struggling to make sense of the nonsensical. They have stumbled into something big, they know that; but, connecting all the dots? . . . nearly impossible. In the process, they are facing internal battles of their own . . . guilt, doubts, fear, anxiety . . . issues that would only be resolved by a "faith-filled perspective".

In spite of the author leaving some unanswered questions on the table (there's no clear indication of a sequel, but there's certainly plenty of room for this story to continue), Risa and Gage reach a most satisfying conclusion, both personally and professionally . . . which is all we need to know for now.

*I purchased a copy and was under no obligation to provide a positive review.

BackCover Blurb
For the past five years, FBI Special Agent Risa Jacobs has worked in the violent crimes against children division of the Houston FBI. She’s never had reason to believe there’s a target on her back . . . until now.

When the long-awaited reunion between Risa and her brother, Trenton, ends in tragedy, Risa is riddled with guilt, unable to cope with the responsibility she feels over his death. On leave from the FBI, Risa returns to her former career as an English teacher at a local college, only to see her past and present collide when one of her students, Carson Mercury, turns in an assignment that reads like an eyewitness account of her brother’s murder, with details never revealed publicly.

Alarmed by Carson’s inside knowledge of Trenton’s death, Risa reaches out to her former partner at the FBI. Special Agent Gage Patterson has been working a string of baby kidnappings, but he agrees to help look into Carson’s background. Risa and Gage soon discover their cases might be connected as a string of high-value thefts have occurred at properties where security systems were installed by Carson’s stepfather and children have gone missing. There’s a far more sinister plot at play than they ever imagined, and innocent lives are in danger.

For fans of romantic suspense comes a heart-pounding thriller about loss, betrayal, and finding the strength to trust again.

Full-length suspense novel
Standalone novel
Book length: approximately 96,000 words
Includes discussion questions for book groups

Tyndale House, September, 2023
Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook


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