About the book (from the publisher): Detective Carly Edwards hates working in juvenile—where the brass put her after an officer-involved shooting—and longs to be back on patrol. So when a troubled youth, Londy Atkins, is arrested for the murder of the mayor and Carly is summoned to the crime scene, she's eager for some action. Carly presses Londy for a confession but he swears his innocence, and despite her better judgment, Carly is inclined to believe him. Yet homicide is convinced of his guilt and is determined to convict him.
Carly's ex-husband and fellow police officer, Nick, appears to be on her side. He's determined to show Carly that he's a changed man and win her back, but she isn't convinced he won't betray her again.
As the investigation progresses, Carly suspects a cover-up and strikes out on her own, uncertain whom she can trust. But when danger mounts, she begins to wonder if she made the right choice.
My take:Accused is an engaging suspense novel that kept me guessing throughout. Each time I had to put the book down, I wanted to keep reading, and the pages seemed to fly by, especially as I got into the second half of the book.
Unfortunately, as much as I enjoyed the plot, I can't give this book five stars. Basically, the story is excellent, but it needed firmer editing. Cantore tends to tell rather than show, especially when emotion is involved. And Carly's thoughts—which are written in first person to get the reader inside her head—sound too scripted. This might work if the entire book was written in first person, but since it's not, jumping into Carly's thoughts only served to draw my attention away from what had been happening.
Still, I enjoyed reading the book (I just stopped to roll my eyes at the writing a few times), and I will probably continue reading this series. 3 stars.
About the author: A former Long Beach, California, police officer of twenty-two years, Janice Cantore worked a variety of assignments, including patrol, administration, juvenile investigations, and training. She's always enjoyed writing and published two short articles on faith at work for Cop and Christ and Today's Christian Woman before tackling novels. A few years ago, she retired to a house in the mountains of Southern California, where she lives with two Labrador retrievers, Jake and Maggie.
Janice writes suspense novels designed to keep readers engrossed and leave them inspired. Accused is the first book in the Pacific Coast Justice series, featuring Carly Edwards. Janice also authored the Brinna's Heart series, which includes The Kevlar Heart and The Heart of Justice.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free for review from Tyndale House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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