My thanks go out to the lovely Noelle, representing publisher Bookouture, for securing me a spot on this ‘Books On Tour’ journey.
As ever, additional thanks go out to NetGalley, for their excellent download and review service.
SAVE HER CHILD – (Jericho and Wright #3)
In the summer heat at the Craven County Fair in rural Pennsylvania, Dr Leah Wright is shocked to find a pregnant woman hiding from view and in labor. Leah manages to deliver the baby safely, but the woman won’t reveal her name. She’s terrified, running from someone, and days later both she and her newborn son go missing…
Desperate to save them, Leah turns to Detective Luka Jericho for help. Eager for Leah’s help with a complex case of his own, Luka asks Leah to interview the widow of a man who has just been murdered. Soon they uncover a shocking connection between the two cases: the widow’s lawyer, a local minister, Reverend Harper, was spotted driving the missing mother away from hospital. Is this the man she was so afraid of?
When Reverend Harper refuses to talk, Luka and Leah turn to the only person who he might speak to: his daughter and Luka’s newest detective, Naomi Harper. But Naomi’s childhood in her father’s stark white house up in the mountains was more painful than Luka and Leah could ever have imagined.
Is it already too late to save the woman and her baby?
She is also a Pennsylvania State music educator, percussionist, composer, and Innovative Percussion Artist.
Cat was raised in State College, PA, and attended medical school at the University of Florida. She did her internship and residency at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, followed by a fellowship in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Akron Children’s Hospital.
She has held teaching appointments at the Medical College of Ohio and the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. She has also worked as a general pediatrician focusing on community health care
“I’ve been a storyteller as long as I can remember. In fact, when I was a kid, I had difficulty knowing the difference between fact and fiction, which stranded me in a ton of time outs. Stories are my way of making sense of the chaos around me”
Keep up to date with all Cat’s latest news at her website
Follow Cat on Twitter
Connect with Cat on Facebook
“She woke before dawn, screaming in pain. No, no, no. It was too soon. The pain stole her breath until she was gasping, swallowing any air she could get, doubled over, her hands cradling her swollen belly. Not now, not here, not now; the words became a bizarre mantra. Then the pain released its grip”
“Despite the August heat stifling the night, the corpse didn’t smell too bad. Not yet, anyway. Detective Naomi Harper knew that wouldn’t last long”
“Justice often had little to do with the practice of law, Luka had learned, the lesson driving him to work even harder”
“Murder motives boiled down to passion, profit, or power”
“Conmen thrived on their victims’ greed and often used the defense that honest men could never be swindled”
“Finally, one of her family members who might actually do more than criticize her career choices or call her a traitor for not betraying her badge”
Luka always warned the others on his squad against the fallacy of connecting unrelated cases together – it was a human tendency; the mind was tempted to create order out of chaos. But in Luka’s experience, all too often chaos ruled, and trying to force facts to fit an orderly theory led to wasted time chasing false conclusions”
“‘Maybe it’s because I never married or had kids,’ Luka said, ‘but it always seemed to me that we may be born into one family, but what counts is the family we choose when we grow older. Who we love, who we’re loyal to, who we’d lay our lives on the line for.’ ‘And who’d lay their lives on the line for us,’ she said in a low voice”
“She couldn’t tell anyone her name, she couldn’t let him find her”
Oh My Goodness! I so want to go back to the beginning of this series, just so that I can flesh out a few of the details surrounding the past lives of Luka and Leah. However, I think that in all reality, author C.J. Lyons has done such an expert job of including most of the salient details, in just enough depth and detail, and at exactly the right time, that I might just need to consider this to be the start of my journey, but one which I shall be sure to continue with, as I have so many high hopes and expectations for this partnership and what their personal and professional lives have in store for them.
The opening lines from both the prologue and first chapter set the scene and had me hitting the ground running, as the action kicked in with those very first words. From then on the pace was relentless and just when I thought it was okay to stop and take a breath, something else happened which had me glued to the edge of my seat and urging the team on again. The ending was conclusive enough for case closure, making this an excellent stand alone story, although for our main protagonists there were probably more personal questions than answers, which is the hook that is set for me to keep wanting, no needing, to come back for more!
This multi-layered, intense and textured storyline of murder, deception, double cross and retribution, is written with consummate ease and total authority, by an author who knows exactly where she ultimately wants to lead both her characters and readers, and by what devious and twisted path she wants to take them. The red herrings are spread liberally and often, and it would only be the very astute who didn’t trip over at least one or two of them along the way, I know I did! It was so easy to become immersed in this complicated and devious plot, which is rich in atmosphere, where the air is constantly crackling with tension, the narrative is visually descriptive, and the dialogue astute and observational. The chapters are at just the right length to be engaging, yet fluid enough to keep the pace fast-moving and the action seamless and affording a real sense of time and place.
When the investigations begin to mount up at an alarming rate and threaten to overwhelm this small team’s resources, it comes as something of a relief when they work out that at least two of them are connected, although like myself, Luka had a suspect and motive list far too long to be feasible. A timely combination of good luck, assured tenacity and changing dynamics, all helps reduce the information overload to manageable proportions, leading to an end-game which is fraught with danger, replete with several unexpected and desperate interventions, and an inevitability which leaves no-one physically unscathed or emotionally traumatised.
Meanwhile, the third investigation has been left to the newest member of the team, Naomi Harper, to ‘cut her teeth’ on, although Luka still manages to make sure that she is coping okay, offer her strategic advice when she starts to make things too personal, and not let her get in too far out of her depth. Little do either of them know, that whilst the links are rather tenuous, this case will overlap with the central investigation, by dint of Naomi’s familial relationships with some of Luka’s suspects, forcing Naomi into the unenviable position of having to choose sides so early on in her career. Having spent much of her young life trying to fit into this established family unit and failing miserably on all counts, there are some rewarding and heart-warming outcomes for her, from the most unexpected of places and although the seeds of acceptance and belonging may still be fragile there are definite green shoots for her to embrace and encourage.
I became completely invested in the cast of complex, yet well drawn and defined characters, who make up this rural community policing unit. Luka is a good strong leader for them, who whilst he doesn’t suffer fools gladly, always manages to make time to listen to the thoughts and views of others, whilst ensuring that although he plays to their strengths, he also makes certain they address their weaknesses, so that all pull their weight evenly. The author had some excellent dynamics and synergy going on between them, which made them totally relatable and honest, both to each other and to me as a reader. Leah has only recently joined the periphery of the team in an advisory capacity, but she is already proving to be an invaluable asset, in a role in which she naturally excels and which she looks set to make her own in the future.
Luka and Leah are both in the midst of not only some serious career choices, but have personal and emotional demons to expunge, excess baggage to compartmentalise and store away and decisions to make not only for themselves, but for those who ultimately depend on them. Only then can a future of hope and promise reach potential fulfilment, or at least those are my hopes and wishes for them. See, I am a romantic at heart, who would have guessed!!
A complimentary kindle download of this book for review, was made available by the publisher and supplied by NetGalley.
Any thoughts or comments are my own personal opinion and I am in no way being monetarily compensated for this, or any other article which promotes this book or its author.
I personally do not agree with ‘rating’ a book, as the overall experience is all a matter of personal taste, which varies from reader to reader. However some review sites do demand a rating value, so when this review is posted to such a site, it will attract a well deserved 5 out of 5 stars!