Friday, August 24, 2012

Book Review: "Abducted" by Janice Cantore, A Tyndale House Publication

I recently curled up with the latest novel by Janice Cantore, Abducted , a Tydale House publication. The book is the second in a series (Pacific Coast Justice), of which I have not read the first, but the second book stands alone just fine. I actually thought there was too much recap of the first novel that wasn't always relevant to the current story line. It was enough to spoil the outcome of the first book, so I didn't feel like I should go back and read it. I think the author could have left it a mystery, enough to make me want to go buy a copy of the first book. The second book, Abducted, revolves around police officer Carly and an investigation into the abduction of her patrol partner's infant son while dealing with her own personal life drama. After divorcing over an affair, newly found forgiveness and grace through Christ have led to the possible reconciliation between Carly and her ex-husband, Nick. Carly and Nick have both become Christians which has helped them change for the better.

The sub-plot includes a strained relationship between Carly and her roommate who doesn't know what to make of Carly's new found Christianity. There is also the new friendship between Carly and Alex, a reporter who once held all cops in a negative light, both personally and professionally. Alex may want more than a friendship which adds to the drama of Carly's reconciliation with Nick.

 Carly's relationship with God as a new Christian plays out in the book much as in any Christian's every day life. Carly prays for favorable outcomes both through inner dialogue and aloud with others. She seeks God's wisdom and turns to her bible for comfort in times of confusion and desperation. Although Christian messages like forgiveness and trust are present in the story line, they wern't spelled out in an unnecessary, hit you over the head with a bible sort of way. They were easy to recognize and the author left it at that. Even if the reader is not a Christian the author makes a good case for forgiving or even having pity on those who at first seem to be in the wrong. I thought it was a great way of reminding the reader of the humanity of all people or in this case, characters, meaning that we all fall short and sin sometimes and each character is not simply a good guy or a bad guy.

The book was a very easy read. It had short chapters and kept you wanting to continue reading from the very start. The dialogue flowed well and the plot line was well constructed. I liked the fact that I almost thought a twist ending was coming but didn't, in the main plot as well as the sub-plot, which I think the author meant to do. I was surprised when it didn't turn out as I expected and delighted because I wasn't able to predict the outcome. Although there is some satisfaction in being able to figure it all out as a reader, I prefer the surprise much more. As a former police officer the author could have filled the novel with lots of police jargon and shorthand but there wasn't too much and what was there was well explained. I feel a bit smarted now that I even know some of the short hand, it was like going for a ride along in the back of a cop car. One could easily finish this books 350+ pages in about a week, perfect for taking along on vacation and reading pool side. I give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5.

This book is available online through Amazon.

**Please note, I did not receive any compensation for this review. I did however receive a copy of the book to review. All opinions are 100% my own and were not influenced in any way.


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