Breach of Trust by Rachel Dylan

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

Breach of Trust by Rachel Dylan

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

There’s no doubt in corporate litigator Mia Shaw’s mind about who killed her friend and colleague, Chase. But the man accused of the murder is a friend of security technician Noah Ramirez, and Noah is sure the real killer is someone else. When Mia takes over Chase’s last case, she uncovers what looks like corporate espionage—and the stakes could prove deadly in Breach of Trust by author Rachel Dylan.

I’m quite a fan of this book’s cover. It’s so on point for legal suspense, and it is indeed the legal side of the stories that I’ve most enjoyed about the Atlanta Justice series. I appreciate how there are multiple sides to the case(s) in this story with a number of moving parts to it all.

Now, in light of those multiple sides, along with multiple characters’ perspectives coming into play, I don’t consider this book to be romantic suspense. The other characters’ points of view and storylines that have nothing to do with the main couple’s romance means, well, it’s not exactly a romance. But since romance isn’t what I read this author for anyway, I didn’t mind the several POVs.

The redundancy in the novel got to me at times, with characters using the same expressions and doing the same little actions over and over, and the narrator sometimes rehashes the same information. And as much as I enjoyed most of the novel, it unraveled for me toward the end. It’s like the story climaxed a bit early, and then there was too much left to tie up and too many twists thrown in after the momentum was gone. Also, it seems that some of the fairly long ending might be more for the benefit of setting up another novel or series.

Nevertheless, I think plenty of other ChristFic suspense fans will enjoy this one.

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Here’s my review of Book One in the Atlanta Justice series, Deadly Proof.

 

Chosen People by Robert Whitlow

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. BookLook Bloggers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.

Chosen People by Robert Whitlow

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Two years ago, while on a trip in Jerusalem with her husband and young daughter, American tourist Gloria Neumann was killed in a terrorist attack. Now, lawyers Hana Abboud and Jakob Brodsky must take their investigation of this case from Atlanta to Jerusalem to seek justice for the Neumann family in Chosen People by author Robert Whitlow.

This was my first time reading this author who’s been on my radar for a few years. The mix of heritages and ethnicities drew me to this legal drama, Jakob being Jewish and Hana being a Christian Arab Israeli living in America. I once read an enlightening memoir written by an Arab Orthodox Christian and Israeli-Palestinian-Arab citizen, so I was as interested in learning more about Hana’s character as I was in finding out about the case at the center of the novel.

The reading was slow going for me, taking a few tries and about half the book before I really got into it. I didn’t find the plot development as tight or gripping as I would have liked. The writing style isn’t quite as sharp as I’ll admit I expected, and certain explanations throughout the book are like little info-dumps.

One of the romantic storylines is rather rushed and trite, developed through clichés. It also seems to force (rush) the romantic characters into their ending. Unless a book is a romance novel where a certain kind of ending is mandatory, I think love stories are sometimes more poignant and believable when they’re left a bit open-ended, without major, permanent commitments or a happy wrap-up that seems like it should have at least taken more time.

Nevertheless, I enjoyed the international legal suspense in this novel. I’ll likely read more by this author in the future.

 

Lone Witness by Rachel Dylan

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. Bethany House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.

Lone Witness by Rachel Dylan

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Sophie recently earned a promotion at the district attorney’s office, and she has a fraud case on her hands involving a local bank employee. Then one terrifying night, Sophie is on the scene of a brutal double homicide. Since she’s now at risk as both a prosecutor and an eyewitness, her father hires a private security guard, Cooper, to keep her safe in Lone Witness by author Rachel Dylan.

This second novel in the Atlanta Justice series can stand on its own, though it brings back a few characters from the previous book. Like that first book, this novel’s strength is in the legal side of things, how the cases unfold in and out of the courtroom. I anticipated the more explosive moments of danger, but there were other key twists I didn’t see coming.

While this novel is labeled as romantic suspense, I’m not sure I’d call it that. Because it includes the perspectives of several characters, two of which are involved in their own subplot, it’s more of a story about various people than about a romantic couple.

Also like the first book, the romance thread isn’t the novel’s strong point. There’s a lot of clichéd phrasing, a trite feel to the development, and though the story tells us Sophie and Cooper have “intense physical chemistry,” I wasn’t convinced of it. The turning point/climax of their relationship comes about with a major change of mind, but we don’t get to see a gradual process or a momentous event that brings about that specific change, to make it more believable.

Nevertheless, Sophie’s contrasting roles as lawyer and witness kept me interested, and other fans of ChristFic legal suspense should enjoy this read.

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Here’s my review of Book Three in the Atlanta Justice series, Breach of Trust.

 

Deadly Proof by Rachel Dylan

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. Bethany House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.

Deadly Proof by Rachel Dylan

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Kate has earned the position of lead counsel in a lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company. More than the chance to further her career as a lawyer, she wants justice for the people whose lives have been severely damaged by a dangerous drug on the market. But when a whistleblower from the company is murdered, Kate soon learns that she may also become a target in Deadly Proof, a novel by author Rachel Dylan.

I’m quite a fan of legal fiction, and it was the pharmaceutical aspect of the plot that most drove me to pick up this romantic suspense novel. While I think the characters tend to repeat or explain the obvious sometimes, the legal points of the story are laid out well. I most enjoyed watching Kate in her professional element.

Overall, however, the characters didn’t really “pop” for me. I found the romance and the spiritual side of the story to be rather trite, relying too much on clichéd phrases and situations without digging deeper. The naiveté of a couple of the characters didn’t feel realistic, especially for people near or past middle age. I saw most of the dangers and twists coming before they happened. Also, on a minor note, I felt like too many sentences, both in the narration and the dialogue, began with the word “And.” I’m actually fond of beginning sentences that way myself, but it can be easy to go a little overboard with it.

Still, I think other fans of ChristFic legal thrillers and romantic suspense may want to check this book out.

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Here’s my review of Book Two in the Atlanta Justice series, Lone Witness.