Thursday, December 27, 2018

Review: "Mind Games" by Nancy Mehl

Every now and again, I love reading a good suspense novel. The problem is that often romantic suspense is overly focused on the romance to the detriment of the suspense, and straight suspense can be far too gruesome for me. So I'm happy to report that Mind Games is neither too romance-focused nor gruesome. It's a win-win!

FBI Behavioral Analyst Kaely Quinn's methods may be highly unorthodox, but her talent is undeniable. She's done her best to establish a new life for herself after being demoted and transferred to St. Louis when a reporter revealed she's the daughter of an infamous serial killer. But when that same reporter claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders ending with Kaely's, it seems her old life has followed her.

When a body is found that fits the poem's morbid predictions, Kaely and her new partner, Special Agent Noah Hunter, are forced to move past his skepticism of her approach and work together to unravel the deadly  riddle.

With a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely must race to catch the murderer before anyone else, including Kaely, is killed.

Mind Games begins with a prologue from the killer's perspective (though the killer's identity doesn't become clear for a very long time) ... and I was completely pulled into the novel right there.

The whole concept of this series is so interesting—FBI profiler Kaely Quinn is really Jessica Oliphant, daughter of a serial killer who terrorized Des Moines. Though Kaely is highly talented, she has some idiosyncrasies that, paired with her past, make her a bit of an outcast. This first book in the series begins with a new killer arriving on the scene—one who has a vendetta against Kaely.

As Kaely and her new partner attempt to solve the case, nearly everyone in Kaely's world becomes a suspect, and Kaely's own mental health comes into question.

Mind Games is a thrill ride from beginning to end! I kept changing my mind as to the killer's identity; when the person was finally revealed, I had it narrowed down to two. The killer does make sense, but I also understand why it took Kaely so long to identify the killer.

The romance in this novel is practically non-existent, though I suspect that will change in future novels. Here, I was happy just to get to know Kaely, Noah, and the other people in the FBI office, and I can't wait to continue the series. 5 stars.

Buy the book.
Read my reviews of Mehl's Inescapable (4-1/2 stars), Unbreakable (3-1/2 stars), and Fatal Frost (5 stars).

Nancy Mehl lives in Missouri with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She's authored thirty books and is currently at work on a new FBI suspense series for Bethany House Publishing. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free for review from Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Also, some of the links in this post are affiliate links; this means if you click the link and purchase an item, I will receive a small commission. 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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