Against All Odds by Irene Hannon ~ Sharing My Review

Against All Odds, Book 1, Heroes of Quantico

About the book ~
For FBI Hostage Rescue Team member Evan Cooper and his partner, dignitary protection duty should have been a piece of cake. Unfortunately, Monica Callahan isn’t making it easy. Estranged from her diplomat father, who is involved in a sensitive hostage situation in the Middle East, she refuses to be intimidated by a related terrorist threat back in the States…until a chilling warning convinces her that the danger is very real—and escalating. As Coop and his partner do their best to keep her safe, David Callahan continues his work—triggering an abduction that puts his daughter’s life at risk. And with every second that ticks by, Coop knows that the odds of saving the only woman who has ever managed to breach the walls around his heart are dropping. Because terrorists aren’t known for their patience—or their mercy.

Sharing my humble opinion~
FBI Hostage Rescue Team Member Evan Cooper is content to work hard and party even harder, and with plenty of available, attractive women, he avoids commitments and emotional entanglements…until he’s assigned to protect Monica Callahan. Monica’s gentle prodding breaks down the barriers he’s erected since his mother’s death and father’s subsequent emotional withdrawal.

Estranged from her father after his abandonment to pursue his diplomatic ambitions, Monica overcame hurt and betrayal, earning a PhD in communications and forging a successful career. If she ever commits to a relationship, she intends it to be with a man who communicates well, someone who doesn’t put his career first. Not Coop. But, she finds herself drawn to the quiet, determined-to-protect-her man.

I like how Monica, a believer, struggles with the issue of forgiveness towards her absentee father. Considering forgiveness a tenet for Christianity, Coop doesn’t understand, and calls her on it. She admits that’s her biggest failing, and in doing so, opens the door for several conversations. I found her honesty refreshing and their discussions on faith realistic.

Monica’s father attempts to reconcile his moral principle of not negotiating with terrorists with his desire to save his daughter. He’s never told his daughter he loves her, yet now she hears his unspoken message. I love how this unfolds during the story.

Wow! With a fast paced, action-packed, nail-biting plot, you might be tempted to sail through this book in a few hours. But I’d recommend against that. This book is flavored with spiritual and moral issues, juicy nuggets I preferred to chew on for a few days. Although it lacks the physical intensity (um, more displays of affection) I generally prefer, Against All Odds more than compensates in emotional and spiritual depth as love and forgiveness transform Monica and Coop. Action, suspense, a tender romance~this book has it all! Definitely a keeper!
 

Do you believe it’s possible for a person to communicate love 
without saying the actual words?

Has a family member hurt you with their choice?
Do you wrestle with forgiveness?

Disclaimer: I purchased this book. No monies were received in exchange for my fair and unbiased review, and all opinions expressed are my own.

Fugitive by Shirlee McCoy ~ Sharing My Review

About the Book~

“HELP ME.”

When she opens her door to a wounded, handcuffed stranger, Laney Jefferson is terrified…until she recognizes her unexpected visitor. Thirteen years ago, Logan Randal was there for her when she desperately needed a friend. Now the wrongfully convicted lawman needs the widow’s help. On the run from the law and guided only by Laney’s unswerving faith in Logan’s innocence, their mutual attraction begins to break down the barriers around Laney’s heart. But the real culprit is much closer than they imagine…a cunning enemy determined to keep the past—and the truth—buried forever.

In my humble opinion~
Sheriff Logan Randal, framed and wrongfully convicted, is on his way to prison when someone ambushes and shoots the guards. Injured and rapidly freezing in a snowstorm, Logan makes his way to a cabin, the killer on his trail. Laney Jefferson, old friend and foster sister, now a widow, intends to wipe her hands of her past, including selling her family’s old house. When Logan arrives at her cabin needing medical attention, Laney refuses his pleas for her to leave. How could she leave him to die when he’d given up so much to protect her years ago

Three people jeopardize their careers and risk their lives to aid Logan, a fugitive from the law, while they track down a killer. I had a little difficulty buying into the plot, but that said, the author did a fabulous job getting me past that initial hesitation. Immediately, McCoy pulls you into the danger, and from the beginning, Logan was actually protecting people, first the injured guard and then Laney, by insisting that she leave. The author did a great job setting up a framework of close friends who believed and trusted in Logan’s innocence that they were willing to help. Every time someone came on board to help, he made sure they knew the risk. Also, since Logan and Laney had a past, initially Laney felt she owed him. 

Obviously, the plot issue wasn’t serious enough to make me stop reading. Just to pause and think about what I’d do if I were in the same situation. Had Logan done for me what he did for Laney (don’t we all wish fictional characters were real-life friends??), I probably would have made the same choice. 

McCoy plops you into the action, pulls your heartstrings to connect you with her characters, and tugs you into their world of danger. I enjoyed hanging out with Logan and Laney for a few hours, hoping they could find peace for their hurting hearts and cheering them on to their happily-ever-after. Fugitive is extremely fast-paced, a book you can probably read in one sitting, but if you’re like me, you’ll want to savor it over a couple nights. Overall, a very enjoyable read.


Fugitive will release on May 7 with Love Inspired Suspense. You can pre-order it here.

Disclaimer: Sending a big thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my fair and unbiased review.

This review begs a question. 
Would you be willing to risk your freedom to protect an old friend who deserved your loyalty if you knew they were a fugitive? 

Tuesday’s Child by Clare Revell

About the Book:
Tuesday’s Child tenders direction
Deaf from the age of five, Adeline Munroe operates a hospital for injured dolls, but lately her quiet life is disturbed by violent, haunting visions. Perhaps it’s just her unspoken fear–a serial killer has struck in Headley Cross. But Adeline soon realizes she’s seeing each murder just before they happen and reluctantly contacts the police.
Detective Sergeant Nate Holmes has enough to deal with between caring for his orphaned niece and his current assignment–the Herbalist killings, so when a woman comes forward who claims to be “seeing” the crimes in dreams, he isn’t hopeful she’ll be of any help. But he knows her from church, and she inexplicably describes how each crime is committed. Is God answering his prayers through Adeline?
Adeline assists the police, yet more women die and she becomes the prime target of the killer. Will Nate crack the case before the Herbalist can complete his agenda–or will the next murder Adeline foresees be her own?
Excerpt:
All of Nate’s senses kicked into action, his copper’s antennae twitching.
She knew something, or at least thought she did.
“What is it?”
Adeline sucked her lower lip into her mouth, worrying it with her teeth. “This is going to sound stupid, but…” She took a deep breath. “I saw them. All of them. They all had their hair tied back or up.” She picked up the top clipping. “She was playing on a swing and wearing a red jacket. This one was walking the dog and wearing blue.”
Nate jolted as if he’d been struck by lightning. Those details hadn’t been released. Was he wrong about her? Was she somehow involved with the murders? “Wait  a minute. How did you know any of this?”
Adeline carried on speaking as she shifted through the papers. “She was on her way to dance class in pink. This one was jogging in a gray toweling track suit and the first one…”
Nate put a hand on her arm, cutting her off.
She jerked her head upwards in surprise.
He held her gaze. “How do you know all this?”
“I told you, I saw them.” 

Make sure you stop back by tomorrow when I share my review of Tuesday’s Child. Now let’s find out a little about Clare Revell. What is your workday like?  Well I don’t sleep much so I’m up at midnight – when the kids have finally gone to bed and hand write until half two or three am. Then sleep til 6.30 when i have to get up to go to the day job in a school. That’s giving the kids breakfast, playing with them, art activity etc. Between 18 and 36 kids a day ranging from 4yr olds to 11 yr olds (foundation stage to year 6). Next its home and then writing more or less all day in between cleaning and cooking and laundry til i fall asleep around 9pm.

 
Sounds like you don’t sleep at all. Not me. I need seven or eight hours or I’m dragging all day. That’s amazing, Clare. Do you have any interesting or strange writing quirks? The first draft is hand written. in pencil. on a narrow leaved spiral bound notebook.

Ouch. Not me. If I drafted in pencil, I’d spend a fortune in erasers. Name one thing you learned from your hero or heroine. There is no such thing as a disability. Just a different kind of problem to deal with and over come.

Love that, Clare! Look to your right – what’s sitting there?  –>
the flower which one of the 4yr olds gave me at work on Thursday

What are some of your favorite things to do when you’re not writing? Reading. My kindle is always on my desk and constantly needs charging up 

Mine, too. Least favorite? housework
 
Here! Here! Do you have a question for our readers?  

The heroine of Tuesday’s Child Adeline is deaf. If you had to lose one sense what would it be and why? Or what sense would you least like to lose.
Thanks so much for visiting, Clare. I’m looking forward to sharing my review of Tuesday’s Child tomorrow! 

Clare lives in a small town in England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, and her three children. Writing from a early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fanfiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children’s stories. When she’s not writing, reading, sewing or keeping house or doing the many piles of laundry her children manage to make, she’s working part time in the breakfast club at one of the local schools.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of three registrars.

You can find Clare here: