Saturday, March 21, 2009

Deceived by James Scott Bell

Former trial lawyer and Christy Award–winner Bell (Presumed Guilty) hits his stride in this twist-filled suspense thriller with punchy dialogue and a resurrection ending to keep readers awake at night. When Liz Towne and her husband, Arty, find diamonds and a corpse along a trail in Pack Canyon, something takes over Liz that one doctor calls "sin dissociation." She stops at nothing to get rich and take a gift to her role model, who taught her to kill. When her sister-in-law Roxanne "Rocky" Towne suspects foul play, Rocky calls on a tortured but praying and faithful Gulf War veteran to help her track down Liz, who is on the run. Dialogue carries the book with rich characters and flashbacks, but time stamps and a confusing wraparound narrative device feel tacked on and unnecessary in this fast-paced thriller with its Los Angeles music scene, creepy canyons and a slew of cons. Bell, who also writes nonfiction books on writing, is a master of the cliffhanger, creating scene after scene of mounting suspense and revelation in this heart-whamming read.

Paperback: 336 pages
Zondervan Publishing
Released March 1, 2009
ISBN-10: 0310269040
ISBN-13: 978-0310269045