Friday, October 24, 2014

"A Promise to Protect" by Patricia Bradley - a complex mystery/suspense

In the second Logan Point novel, Sheriff Ben Logan promises a dying man to protect his sister, Dr. Leigh Sommerall - a woman he had fallen in love with back in college, but the romance failed to work out.  Leigh would prefer to avoid Ben at all costs, but with no family left except her son - her parents, grandparents, husband, and brother all dead - she is forced to rely on him for protection, since her brother's killer is after her now too.  But Leigh is harboring a secret that could change Ben's life forever.
A Promise to Protect
Like the book before it, I enjoyed the complexity of the case.  Is there one villain?  Two?  More?  Are all the events connected, or are there multiple vendettas? Bradley is good at dangling potential red herrings for the reader.  The person I suspected most proved innocent (as did my I-really-hope-this-is-not-the-villain runner-up), for which I was kind of glad - I don't want the villain to be too obvious.  And I really appreciate that the villain doesn't waste time with last-minute gloating and confessing!  It makes for a stronger story when the characters don't have to rely on the villain's confession for solving the mystery. 

Given the amount of hurt Ben and Leigh have been carrying around for the past decade, the focus on forgiveness is a good choice; not just for each other, but for family and self.  I enjoyed the return of several characters from book one, including Taylor and her victim-profiling talents.  Hopefully the cop Livy will feature in her own book next . . .  Patricia Bradley writes a solid mystery with a well-played element of suspense.  I look forward to her next book!

Thank you Revell for providing a free book for the purpose of review; I was not required to make it positive, and all opinions are my own.

Logan Point
1. Shadows of the Past
2. A Promise to Protect
3. Gone without a Trace
4.  Silence in the Dark

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