Saturday, June 18, 2016

Shattered Trust by J. Chris Richards

This debut novel is a good character study of a police officer trying to get his life straightened out. Officer Logan Taul is a flawed character. He'd left his wife and children and had become a belligerent law enforcer.

One night, after roughing up a teen for no reason other than trying to meet their self established quota of arrests, Logan sees himself as he really is. He goes to the police chief and bares all. Other policeman are incriminated too. Logan really wants to get his life back together but there are some on the force who want to see him fail miserably. It soon becomes apparent someone is framing him, ruining his reputation with the police force and alienating him from his family.

There is lots of action in this novel as Logan tries to defend his character and actions. In his attempt to get his life turned around, he tutors teens. The young people and others rally around Logan to help him when the future seems hopeless.

Logan is a flawed character, a little too flawed for me. He seemed a little dense for being a police officer, often missing important indications of what was going on. He was not a strong character in that he was not the persevering type. He seemed to stumble his way along.

My favorite character was the older woman in the records department. She made people think she did everything by hand when she was really a computer whiz. That might be a little unrealistic in modern police departments but it was a fun aspect of the novel.

As the novel opens, Logan is years behind in his child support. That seemed unrealistic to me. I am sure the police department would have done an extensive background check before he would have been hired. I think child services would have been able to track him down too.

I feel this is a good debut effort. It was a bit long. I would have preferred it being trimmed to the more standard length of around 320 pages. I was disappointed that, while Logan attended church, his faith did not have a very strong influence in his actions and did not sustain him when he needed it. Nonetheless, this is a good novel about a deeply flawed man trying to get his life together.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

J. Chris Richards has been writing as long as she can remember. This is her debut novel. She is the Young Adult Managing Editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. She has been a speaker at various writers' conferences and is the co-founder of WAY – Words and Youth Conferences, writing conferences for teenagers. Find out more at www.PassingTheQuill.com.

Prism Book Group, 374 pages.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through The Book Club Network for the purpose of an independent and honest review.
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