Friday, March 8, 2013

The Survivor by DiAnn Mills

Kariss Walker writes suspense novels, having made a name for herself on TV news and writing suspenseful romance. She is contacted by Dr. Amy Garrett, a woman who had been attacked when she was nine years old. While the attacker left her for dead, Amy survived. The attacker was never arrested. Now, twenty three years later, Amy wants Kariss to write a novel about her experience, hoping to draw out the man.
The man has been tracking Amy all these years. When he finds out Amy and Kariss are working on the novel, he decides to finally finish what he started then.
Right in the middle of the action is FBI Agent Santiago Harris. In the first novel in this series, Kariss abruptly ended her relationship with him. In this novel, we see them both struggling with their feelings.

This is the second in the Crime Scene: Houston series and I think it would be beneficial to have read the first in the series. While this book can be read alone, there is much that happened between Kariss and Tigo (Santiago) in the earlier book that is essential to understanding this one.

Mills touches on many issues in this book. She writes that she strove to depict realistic family dynamics in the midst of tragedy. We read about favoritism by parents and rebellion by a son. We are confronted with the infidelity of a pastor and a scorned mistress. There is a spouse who kept secrets and Tigo kept a secret from Kariss. There would certainly be a great deal to discuss at a reading group and discussion questions are included.

There is lots of action and suspense in this novel. Christianity is well presented and essential to many of the characters.

The only aspect I did not like about the novel was that Kariss sometimes seemed too naive. For one who had been through danger in the first novel and herself wrote mystery novels, she made some stupid decisions. While she is a fighter and strong character, some parts of her personality just didn't seem to go with the rest of her.

All in all, a pretty good novel with suspense and romance.

DiAnn Mills is an award winning author with more than fifty books published. She won Christy Awards in 2010 and 2011. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists. She and her husband live in Houston, Texas.

Zondervan, 384 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book for the purpose of this review.

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