Thursday, August 18, 2011
Review: Beguiled by Deanne Gist and J. Mark Bertrand
Publisher: Bethany House
Rylee Monroe is a struggling dog walker in the historic district of Charleston, South Carolina. As a young child she lived among the well-to-do residents. However, her parents left her with few resources and now she is the sole provider for her grandmother living in an upscale nursing home. Oddly, many of Rylee's clients have had items stolen from their homes and then donated to non-profit organizations. The systematic burglar, quickly becomes known as the Robin-Hood thief. Money doesn't seem to be his or her motive. As the break-ins continue, the violence is escalated and seems to become more personal. Since Rylee seems to not be far when the crime's occur, the police are keeping an eye on the local dog walker who has access to these houses. As the police begin questioning Rylee, she becomes defensive and appalled by their treatment of her. They begin to belittle her, and reminding her of her painful family history. A family history she is not forthcoming about, and tries to conceal. Logan, a local reporter hot-on-the-trail of the Robin-Hood burglar begins to realize that Rylee is right in the middle of these burglaries. Rylee is now terrified of the streets of Charleston herself. She has a distinct feeling that someone is following her and when her car window is broken and her intimates stolen, her terror is heightened. However, with the police interrogating her, she has a hard time asking for help. Logan, is drawn to Rylee, he wants to help her, he wants to believe her, but every now and then he wonders if the police may be right.
Beguiled was an intriguing suspense read. I really enjoyed this fast-paced novel. Deeanna Gist a romance novelist, and J. Mark Bertrand a suspense writer wove a great romantic mystery. I have never read anything from either writer, but I will be on the lookout for more of their writing. I loved the two voices of the novel. The reader is in for a treat when Rylee and Logan's perspectives are rotated. This novel is a Christian Fiction novel, and I did not find it too preachy. I thought it was believable and relatable. The plot twists were great. I had a feeling who was involves in the thefts, but it was much more complex then I imagined. I really enjoyed the romance thrown into the book, it added another dimension to the novel. I didn't want to put this one down. I will be recommending this one to friends.
I really liked the cover on this one. The rich curtains, the strong doorway did remind me of the rich neighbourhood. Although, Rylee did treat her clients like family she was always looking in. She was never apart of them. I was even impressed when I was reading and there is a mention of Rylee's short hair, I flipped to the cover and yes, the model has shorter hair. Covers really do impact me. If a book has a beautiful cover, I will tend to pick it up and read what it is about. I thought the cover was well done. I'm just not sure what the model is wearing, it looks a little outdated.