Sunday, March 7, 2010

Deadly Disclosures by Julie Cave

book cover

Deadly Disclosures
by Julie Cave

Trade Paperback: 287 pages
Publisher: Master Books
First Released: 2010

Buy from publisher

Source: Review copy (galley) from the publisher.

My Description of the Book:
FBI agent Dinah Harris is in disgrace after her personal life fell apart a year ago and her grief caused her to make a mistake that cost a man his life. She's now severely depressed, self-medicating using alcohol, and has considered suicide. What does she have left to live for?

Her old partner, David, pulls her into a missing person case in an attempt to help her. The prominent Secretary of the Smithsonian has vanished from his office, and his associates are telling a story that sounds rehearsed. When someone finally agrees to talk to them later, in private, she's soon found severely beaten and no longer willing to talk.

When the Secretary's body is discovered, Dinah and her partner must discover who is behind the ever-increasing body count and why the Secretary was killed in the first place. With the news press harshly questioning why a failure like Dinah is on the case, will her method of coping (by getting drunk) get her fired before the answers are found? Will she find a reason to live when all she feels is pain, loss, and loneliness?

Deadly Disclosures is a well-written detective suspense novel. The story was fast-paced, and the world-building was excellent. The details about the setting and the job brought the world alive in my imagination.

The characters were interesting and had realistic struggles. We didn't find out the details of why Dinah was so broken until late in the story, which made it difficult for me to bond with her, but enough information was dribbled out up until then that her actions were understandable and I cared about her.

I felt that some parts of the ending were wrapped up a little quickly--there were a few minor details that I questioned as they seemed to contradict something said earlier or seemed a little convenient. However, I was reading a galley and these minor details might have been fixed by the final version of the book.

The two main characters weren't Christian, but there were several Christian topics brought up during the novel. For example, a short TV debate between an atheist (the Secretary of the Smithsonian in his younger years) and a Christian was described during the murder investigation. Both atheist and Christian arguments were treated respectfully with no "straw men" arguments or quick conversions. Neither Christians nor atheists were portrayed as all good or all evil. Members of the secretive organization being investigated were shown doing good things and genuinely objecting to the murders. So, overall, I thought the Christian elements were handled very well and wouldn't bother most readers, but it is a Christian novel.

There was no sex and no bad language. I'd highly recommend this novel as well-written, clean reading.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt from Chapter One
Thomas Whitfield climbed out of the Lincoln Towncar and stood in the snappy, early morning fall air, breathing deeply. The temperature had fallen a few more degrees overnight, signaling that winter was truly on its way.

Thomas glanced up and down the wide street. There was nobody around at this early hour, and he took a moment to drink in the sights of his beloved city. The graceful willows, their branches arching over the street, were turning gold and red and, in the gentle yellow morning light, threw off highlights like burnished copper. This street was like many others in the center of DC — wide and tree-lined, with magnificent government buildings standing one after the other. That was another thing that Thomas found so delicious about this city — so much of it hinted at the enormous wealth and prosperity of the country, and yet only a few streets behind these world-famous landmarks, the seedier side of American poverty flourished. It was a city of contradictions, Thomas thought.

His gaze fell finally to the building right in front of him — the main complex of the Smithsonian Institution. Enormous stone pillars flanked the entryway into a marble lobby, and behind that were laid out the evidence of mankind’s brilliance. Everything about the institution was testament to the scientific and anthropological advances of man over the pages of history — the inventions, the discoveries, the deductions, the sheer radiance of a human being’s intelligence at its finest.

Thomas Whitfield had always been immensely proud of this place, and everything it showcased. He had boasted about it, defended it, nourished it, and protected it, the way a proud father would his prodigious child.

He was the secretary of the Smithsonian, after all, and he felt a strange kind of paternal relationship with the buildings and their contents.

He stood for a moment longer, a slender whippet of a man dressed immaculately, with highly polished shoes gleaming, thinning dark hair cut short, and a gray cashmere scarf to ward off the cold. Then he purposefully strode down the path and into the main building, scarf fluttering behind him.

To the malevolent eyes watching him through high-powered binoculars down the street in a non-descript Chevy, he presented a painfully easy target.

Thomas settled in his large office with the door shut, turned on the computer, and shut his eyes briefly as he contemplated what he would do next. The course of events he had planned for this day would change everything, and the impact would be felt right up to the president himself. Courage, Thomas, he told himself silently. What you are about to do is the right thing to do.

He began to type, slowly and decisively, feeling within himself a great sense of conviction and purpose. He was so lost in concentration that he was startled by the door suddenly swinging open.

“What are . . . ?” he exclaimed, almost jumping off his seat. Then he recognized his visitor and he glanced at his watch.

“What are you doing here?” Thomas asked.

Read the read of chapter one.


Jennifer White said...

I couldn't put the book down. I NEEDED to know Dinah Harris' back story.

The story line was very believable to me. The author used events from our nation's history that helped me relate to the characters even more.

I believe the book is an excellent tool to help people understand the love and power of God. It would be a good book to give to a non believer to initiate a discussion.

Genre Reviewer said...

Hi, Jennifer. Thanks for commenting.

For me, it was discovering Thomas Whitfield's back story that kept me turning the pages. ;)

I agree, this book would be a good one to give to a non-Christian as an enjoyable way to start a discussion.

Annette W. said...

I look forward to what other books you recommend. I haven't read this, but you make it sound good! And I love suspense!

Genre Reviewer said...


Well, it is a good novel, especially if you like suspense. :) I'm glad you're enjoying my reviews, and I hope they'll help you discover some great novels that match your tastes.

Thanks for taking the time to comment.