Monday, August 6, 2012

Accused by Janice Cantore

book cover
by Janice Cantore

ISBN-13: 9781414358475
eBook: 263 pages
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Released: January 1, 2012

Source: Free eBook promotion.

Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
Detective Carly Edwards hates working in juvenile—where the brass put her after an officer-involved shooting—and longs to be back on patrol. So when a troubled youth, Londy Atkins, is arrested for the murder of the mayor and Carly is summoned to the crime scene, she's eager for some action. Carly presses Londy for a confession but he swears his innocence, and despite her better judgment, Carly is inclined to believe him. Yet homicide is convinced of his guilt and is determined to convict him.

Carly's ex-husband and fellow police officer, Nick, appears to be on her side. He's determined to show Carly that he's a changed man and win her back, but she isn't convinced he won't betray her again.

As the investigation progresses, Carly suspects a cover-up and strikes out on her own, uncertain whom she can trust. But when danger mounts, she begins to wonder if she made the right choice.

My Review:
Accused is a Christian detective suspense/mystery novel. The police-action part of the story was very exciting and interesting. The details about the job and setting were vivid enough to immerse me in the story and didn't slow the fast pacing. The suspense was created by not knowing who could be trusted and by the physical danger to anyone who questioned how the case was being handled.

Carly was an engaging character who reacted in realistic ways to the situation she was in. There were a large number of characters and most were so similar that I had trouble keeping track of them. Luckily, the author usually worked in cues with the name so I'd know who was being referred to.

During the story, the suspense and police work periodically paused so that Carly could be preached at. The Christians were initially cookie-cutter Christians: they all acted the same, had the same lines (which you do hear preached at non-Christians all the time), had the same level of complete and perfect faith no matter how long they'd been a Christian, and had the inability to ask Carly what her problem was with God so they could actually address her issues. Understandably, Carly didn't react well to this, and I was not particularly interested in it, either.

Carly's hostile attitude toward Christians was so built up that I had trouble accepting her suddenly changing attitude. Later in the story, a lawyer and a roofer both came across as more realistic, living Christians, and they did talk with instead of talk at Carly. I think I would have liked the overall story better if the initial Christian scenes had been fewer and less cookie-cutter.

There was a lot of God-talk: prayer, true but cliche phrases, etc. Carly's main question seemed to be, "What good is a god that will let me and the people that I love suffer and die?" While the various characters did touch on some related issues (like the world was not created to be this way, people have the choice to do bad things, etc.), I was disappointed that the main issue was never really answered (since there is a good answer to it).

There was a minor amount of "he cursed" style of bad language. There were no sex scenes. There was no graphic wound or dead body descriptions. Overall, I'd recommend this exciting suspense novel.

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: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

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