Monday, October 19, 2015

"Vendetta" by Lisa Harris - an intense, well-played suspense

Cover ArtIn Vendetta, Lisa Harris introduces us to the heroine of her latest series, The Nikki Boyd Files. An agent on the Missing Persons Task Force, Nikki has been mourning the disappearance of her sister for years. When a photograph of the missing girl shows up at the crime scene, she recognizes similarities to her sister's disappearance. As she hunts the abductor, suddenly she starts feeling like the hunted . . .

While I have enjoyed Harris's previous books, this one really stood out to me and is my favorite by far. Maybe it's because I love it when nature plays a significant role in the story--in this case, the rugged Smoky Mountains and Appalachian Trail provide much of the setting. But additionally, the abduction case is not only intense and well written, but also went a different direction than I expected. I love it in a mystery/suspense when the author manages to pull off a significant plot twist like that.

As the series is entirely focused on Nikki Boyd and not each individual book on a different character, I'm glad the author takes some things slow--like Nikki's romantic relationship. When the focus of a book is on the suspense and mystery, it can be hard to develop a realistic romance too, especially in, say, a 48-hour time frame. But this time, with a series to stretch it over, we can see the romance develop naturally. Not to mention there are some serious hurdles to get over . . .

Given that this is a series, I enjoyed that there are still some threads (in addition to the romance) to pursue in future novels--not everything is wrapped up into a neat package in the end. And I liked Nikki's thoughts on the bad things that happen, of which she has had her fair share:
"Sometimes there truly is nothing you can do to change your circumstances. Sometimes all you can do is hold on for dear life and pray that God will help you find a way through the storm. Sometimes he shows you a way to escape, and sometimes he walks through the fire with you. But I'm starting to realize that as much as I've battled with God, nothing that happens here on this earth changes who God is." (276)
I definitely recommend this suspense novel, and look forward to Nikki Boyd's future cases!

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

Nikki Boyd Files
1. Vendetta
2. Missing
3. Pursued 
4. Vanishing Point

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