Tag Archives: christian suspense

Uncommon Heroes Series Review

8 Oct

If you’ve been following SGL for any decent length of time, you’re aware of what a BIG fan of Dee Henderson I am. I don’t read a whole lot of books set in modern times, honestly. But the way she writes intrigue, suspense and clean, intentional romance just grabs my attention and doesn’t let it go. I’ll share links to my other book reviews at the bottom of this post. I’m currently in the middle of a Henderson kick, aka, reading every Henderson book that I can get my hands on. And yes, I’m heading to the library asap to pick up more.

But today, I want to share with you a simply lovely three book series, Uncommon Heroes.

“The only easy day was yesterday.” -Navy Seal Motto

True Devotion – Lifeguard Kelly Jacobs was pulled by the waves of the sea, the cold and exhaustion making it hard to stay awake. She knew time for a rescue was running out as the sun set. But just as sure as she was about that, she also knew her best friend would come and find her. Navy Seal Lieutenant Joe ‘Bear’ Baker pulled Kelly from the sea and in those moments of being held safely in his arms, she said the wrong thing. Their friendship on uncertain terms, both Joe and Kelly have some decisions to make. For Kelly, can she risk loving another active military man? She did that once and has the folded flag to prove it. For Joe, can he learn to balance a relationship as well as his career? What they don’t know is that the man who killed Kelly’s husband is closer than either of them know and danger is just around the corner.

~ I’ll start out by saying that I love the fact that God is our refuge is such a part of this book. Both characters learn and lean on that. I just adore Bear and his struggles and wanting to do what’s right. I really enjoy the Seal aspect of the story. Of course, I can’t attest to just how accurate that part of it is but it’s interesting and done well, in my opinion.

“These things we do, that others may live.” – Air Force PJ Motto

True Valor – While Lieutenant Grace ‘Gracie’ Yates is flying an F/A-I8 Hornet and trying to keep the peace while readying for war, Major Bruce ‘Striker’ Stanton, an Air Force Pararescue Jumper, is on the ground pulling pilots and Special Forces soldiers from behind enemy lines. Bruce knows that Grace is too good of a pilot to not pull the tough assignments, and if trouble comes, his unit will be the one to get the call. They keep a relationship alive through love letters while they are both deployed, leaning on God’s assurance that He is sufficient no matter what. That faith will be tested when a dogfight erupts and Grace’s plane is damaged. Determined not to be the first woman pilot shot down behind enemy lines, Grace babies her plane and fights the need to eject. But her fighter jet goes down. And Bruce now has only one mission: get Grace out alive.

~I probably can’t say enough good about this one, you guys. This is one of my favorites of all time of hers. I just love who Bruce is – his intentional seeking out of Grace, how he keeps tabs on his sister, his friends, etc. Grace is a confident pilot who is still reeling from a loss and learning how to get back to living a full life. I really appreciate how Henderson weaves that through. And of course, the military aspect just sucks me in.

True Honor- When the cold war was over, Darcy St. James retired from the CIA with an Intelligence Star for Valor. For the last two years, she’s been enjoying civilian life. But then September 11 happened and she was called back for her knowledge and experience. The nation needs her street smarts and network of contacts. She’s on the trail of a man who knew what was going to happen on September 11 and chose to profit from it. Darcy meets Chief Petty Officer Sam ‘Cougar’ Houston during the first days of the war. He is busy following the intelligence that Darcy is finding. His role as a sniper has him taking out one enemy at a time. Their romance is one they didn’t expect but it flourishes despite the distance and stresses of their jobs. And then they find out that Darcy is high on the terrorists list of targets.

~This is my favorite of the series. Even over the second book. I just adore Darcy (I’m sure part of that is her name, tbh) and her longing to be out of the spy game while knowing that she can’t sit on the sidelines of this war. She struggles with good vs evil and finds an unexpected blessing in Sam. Sam is a solid believer, who knows what he’s fighting for and that good will win in the end. He realizes the treasure that he’s found in Darcy. I found it interesting, their dynamic of her finding information and his unit being the one to carry out the missions. I liked that overlap. It was interesting, it being based on the war that I actually lived through, and brought to home the sadness and terror a bit more than reading about other wars do. I really like the twists and turns for the search for the man that Darcy is hunting.

I think that’s all I can say about each of the books. I genuinely enjoy all three of them, although as you can tell, as the series continues I love the books more. The romances are all clean, intentional and based on faith. I so appreciate that in novels.

This series was printed back in 2002 and yet, I feel like it’s still one of my favorites of hers. I’d love to hear if you’ve read this series?

Other Dee Henderson reviews on SGL:

The O’Malley Series Review

Book Reviews- Dee Henderson Special

Series Review – Heart of India

17 Jan

I have loved this series for at least 15 years. Written by Linda Chaikin, it is full of mystery, intrigue, romance, history, etc etc. Set in India, it follows Coral Kendall and Captain Jace Buckley. I’ll go into more detail under each book title but what I enjoy so much is that, even if it is only a novel, you learn some history about the upheaval of India, and the mission work that went on there. After finishing it this last time, I decided I really want to read some biographies on the missionaries, including William Carey.

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What’s fun is that as I’ve read them over the years I’ve been able to pick up something different each time. When I was younger, I really only could identify with some of what she goes through, but now…. to put it as a friend does ‘the books grow with you’.

As for who it would be appropriate for, I’m guessing I started reading it around 15 years old. It has no language or sexual overtures in it. But there are battles and intrigues going on so I don’t know how much younger it would be appropriate. As usual, that’s up to you!

Silk – Coral Kendall does the only thing she can do while her dear friend is dying, she promises to care for the newborn baby. In doing so, she breaks caste – she is a silk heiress and the baby is an Untouchable.  She quickly falls in love with Gem and teaches him about God as he grows older. But when he is kidnapped, her strength is tested and her faith that he is still alive is the only thing that will get her through. She enlists the aid of a sea captain to find her son.

Under Eastern Stars – Coral’s decision to start a school for the children on the plantation only aggravates an already volatile situation. India is increasingly more dangerous as hatred for the English is used by those hungry for power. Coral’s Uncle, Hugo Roxbury is determined to stop her plans of a school. Two very different men are filling her heart – the sea captain, Jace Buckley, and Dr. Ethan Boswell, the man who has professed his love.

Kingscote – With Buckley’s promise to bring her son Gem home by Christmas, Coral sets out to start her school for the Untouchables. Ethan has committed himself to helping her. Danger soon rears its ugly head, this time on Kingscote in the form of ashes of the Hindi scriptures that William Carey gave her. Jace searches for Gem but the world of intrigue are dangerous and he starts wondering if he will ever get back to Kingscote to claim Coral as his own.

~I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there are new pages to check out! The Book List will have all the books I’ve reviewed in one convenient place! It will take a while to get that done though, so bear with me. The Chronic Pain and My Writing pages are still waiting for content but don’t forget to come back and check them out. Thanks for stopping by SGL,

Have any favorite series you want to share with me?

~Laura

The O’Malley Series Review

29 Sep

I’m switching it up a bit and reviewing a whole series for you today! Yes, I read this series this month, and yes you’ll be getting a post reviewing the other books I’ve read. Have I done anything else this month, besides reading? Apparently not. Because that’s a lot of books!

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This is the O’Malley Series by Dee Henderson. If you haven’t read anything by her, you must – you simply must. I haven’t found even one book of hers that I didn’t like. She writes Christian suspense novels and has won awards for them.

If you’ve been following SGL for a while, you’ve seen at least a few reviews on Hendersons’ books. But this. This series is fantastic. I have picked all seven of them up at garage sales and thrift and used book stores over the years but when in the midst of book four, I realized I didn’t own book five! A tragedy there, my friends. Amazon was there to save the day though and the morning after I finished book four, book five came in the mail.

Now, when I say it’s seven books, that’s not completely accurate. Technically, there are only six in the series. But she wrote a prequel that I count as one of the series. Because it flows. And it’s just as good as the others.

I thought I’d give a brief description of each book and then review them as a whole. Grab your mug of hot tea, cocoa or coffee and get ready to fall in love with the O’Malley’s.

Danger in the Shadows (prequel)  – Sara has been hidden away in protective custody for years. Adam Black is a  former pro-football star. Falling for him could very well risk her life.

The Negotiator – Being an FBI agent, Dave Richman’s job is to keep people safe. Kate O’Malley is a hostage negotiator that doesn’t hesitate to step in the middle of danger. Falling in love with her is easy, but Dave is about to find out that keeping her safe isn’t.

The Guardian – Marcus O’Malley is a U.S. Marshall and his job is to keep the only witness of a judge’s murder safe. Shari Hanford unexpectedly steals his heart, and in the process, changes his life. The only problem? She’s in the center of an assassins crosshairs.

The Truth Seeker – Being a forensic pathologist keeps Lisa O’Malley surrounded by dead women. Solving mysteries is her job. But this time, she’s found the killer and now she’s gone missing. Quinn Diamond, U.S. Marshall, has slowly fallen in love with her. Now, he has to find her before time runs out for both of them.

The Protector – Fireman Jack O’Malley has an arsonist to catch – the man is targeting his district, shift and friends. Finding him means protecting the woman Jack loves, for she saw him…

The Healer – Working for the Red Cross in the midst of disasters, Rachel O’Malley is one of the best. But when a school shooting occurs and she knows the kids, dealing with the trauma and helping them proves too much.

The Rescuer – Stephen is a paramedic running from the pain of his past. Meghan is blind and caught in the middle of a criminal conspiracy. As she shows him God’s love, he finds himself falling in love with her. But then she’s kidnapped in the midst of a tornado….

Review: Faith is very much a part of each of these books. I like the fact that Henderson has each person have a different point of difficulty for believing. But there isn’t too much preaching going on – even I start skimming when someone preaches for a few pages straight. The characters are well developed and you become jealous of their sibling relationships! They adopted each other, choosing a last name to share, and that bond created is amazing. I enjoy stories that involve careers so far removed from what I know. I have read these books for years, and will continue to do so in the coming ones.

*I’d like to note that any books I read are free of foul language or any immoral …stuff. If there is a hint of it, I will tell you but that is the most that I will read, and by default, will share with you. Not everything I read is faith-based though, so keep that in mind if that is your priority. *

*If you click any link here and buy from amazon, I will get a percentage from the sale. Just a way I’m trying to make a little money from this hobby of mine*

Book Review – January

30 Jan

The worth of a book is to be measured

by what you carry away from it.

~James Bryce

Today starts a new monthly series I am excited about! As you know, I am keeping track of what books I read throughout the month, and have decided that it would be fun to share with you what I read and my thoughts on each book!  So for January, I read five books and am currently still engrossed in two.

My goal is to read a variety of genres – biography, theology, information (blogging, writing, etc…) , fun novels. This month I did not make it to some of them, but I have some plans for next month (can you believe that is only a few days away already??)

  • The Giblin Guide to Writing Children’s Books –by James Cross Giblin – This was a GREAT resource for anyone wanting to write their way into the world of children’s books. It includes the requirements of books for each age group, advice on actual writing, getting published and after publishing. I took several pages of notes, it was so chock-ful of information! I am contemplating buying it, it was so helpful.
  • An Assembly Such As This – by Pamela Aiden -It is a retelling of Pride and Prejudice, but from Darcy’s side of things. The author keeps true to Jane Austen’s characters while bringing in a different side of Darcy and weaving in great side story lines. A must read for anyone who loves Austen novels. She also keeps it all g-rated, which is essential if I’m going to read it!  this is a favorite of mine. I stumbled upon this at a second-hand bookstore. Fell in love with it, then stumbled across the third/final book of the series at the same store a few months later. Thank goodness for the library having the second book!
  • Full Disclosure – by Dee Henderson – A mystery/suspense christian novel that has you guessing every chapter. The twists and turns in the book are delightful and keeps you up at night throughout the 400 odd pages. Ann Silver is a ‘cop’s cop’. Paul Falcon works for the FBI as the top murder cop in the Midwest.  A difficult case throws their lives together and as Paul gets to know her better, he realizes just who he’s falling in love with…..
  • Twice Promised – by Maggie Brendan – two women answer a mail-order bride ad. The groom didn’t place the ad nor is he interested in anything other than running his business in a busy mining town. This is a sweet romance filled with situations that make you shift in your seat in sympathy with the character. I read this directly after the Dee Henderson book so I didn’t enjoy it as much as I think I would have.
  • Who Let the Blogs Out? – by Biz Stone – a book all about the history of blogs and how to start your own and html coding. i admit i lost interest near the end… forget why now but the middle was fantastic information for growing your blog.
  • Hans Brinker or Silver Skates – by Mary Mapes Dodge – this book was first published in 1865. This story takes place in early nineteenth-century Holland. The description of Holland is fascinating, including some Dutch words which aspects always make me enjoy a book more. There are two connecting story lines – Poor Hans dreams of winning the Silver Skates in an ice-skating race while we also see the lives of other Dutch boys whose families are a little more well-off than Hans’. It’s a great read – a bit slow for me but i love picking it up every evening to see what’s coming next. The boys just caught a man trying to steal from them in their hotel room… Captain Peter and cowardly Carl saved the day.  And I just found out that it was made into a movie in the late 1960s! yes! watching that once I finish the book!
  • A Northern Light –by Jennifer Donnelly , read by Hope Davis. Yes, it’s an audiobook. deal with it. In the poor, harsh and depressing setting of 1906, Mattie Gokey dreams of bigger things than her family’s farm – completing high school, going to college in New York City and becoming a writer. Along with the trials she chronicles, a backstory of the murder that inspired ‘An American Tragedy’ keeps your attention. The only thing I’m not liking about this story so far is the randomly-thrown-in cuss words. I normally don’t tolerate any in my stories but so far they are not frequent.
  • Hebrew in 10 Minutes a Day –by Kristine Kershul – an easy language learning kit that my OH had from years ago. I admit that I haven’t gotten very far in it yet, but I do intend to learn Hebrew! I will prevail! hehe.

And there you have it! A review of what has occupied a good amount of my time this month. I hope you get inspired to pick up a book this coming month instead of cleaning a video game… ahem. anyway.

Happy Reading!

~Laura

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