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Zondervan / 2010 / Paperback
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Joanne Weeks knows that Baxter Jackson killed his wife seven years ago---but the church elder still walks the streets a free man. Drawing on her investigative skills, Joanne is determined to bring Jackson to justice. Can she track down the only person who can put him behind bars---a woman who disappeared after the murder? 352 pages, softcover from Zondervan.
Brandilyn Collins, known for her trademark Seatbelt Suspense, is the bestselling author of Violet Dawn, Coral Moon, Crimson Eve, Eyes of Elisha, and other novels. She and her family live in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Visit her website at www.brandilyncollins.com and her blog at www.forensicsandfaith.blogspot.com
Deceit, a mystery by Brandilyn Collins, attacks dishonesty to reveal truth about friendship and love. As a missing persons detective, Joanne Weeks is required to lie to reveal truth, but as a Christian she is required to love. These obligations divide Joanne between helping others through lying and loving the liars.
Deceit carries two stories. As Joanne meets new people in one chapter, we learn about these people's past in the next chapter. We want to shout warnings to Joanne that the people she is trusting are dishonest because we have seen their true character.
Joanne has never accepted the death of Linda Jackson as a mere accident. Her best friend was murdered, but the only suspect is the town's philanthropist and Linda's religious husband. This tangled network of suspicion leads Joannes search for the couples lost foster daughter and the murders witness, Melissa. However, Melissa's past action puts this young womans integrity into question.
Joanne Weeks has the stuff of a plucky woman. Even after her husband passes away, she has continued to enjoy her work and life. Unfortunately, whereas Joannes character comes vividly to life, the secondary characters never leave the page. Shallow relationships leave the readers wading in waters in which they would prefer to swim.
Women will find Deceit as satisfying as a glass of water its Christian flavor may be tasteless, but its plot is refreshing. Clever construction seasoned with intense scenes and a dash of romance makes Deceit a truly good overall story. Micah M. Hancock, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
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Author: Brandilyn Collins
Submitted: August 05, 2010
Tell us a little about yourself. I'm known for writing my trademarked Seatbelt Suspense®--stories that are fast-paced from page one, feature three-dimensional characters, are full of twists, and include a faith thread woven naturally into the story. DECEIT is my 21st book.
What was your motivation behind this project? Skip tracing as a choice of career fascinated me and provided a natural means for my protagonist to get herself into trouble. When I started plotting, besides the skip tracing skills I knew only a few things about my protagonist, Joanne Weeks: she loves Jelly Belly jelly beans (no, they're not a favorite of mine), and she has one of those crazy Billy Bass singing fishes hanging on her wall. Hm, I thought, those are some interesting quirks. Just who IS this character ...?
What do you hope folks will gain from this project? Bottom line, DECEIT is about deceit. Lying is something that is part of so many people's lives--from the big deceptions to the "little white lies." Is God ever okay with any kind of lie? And what deceit might reside in each of us--deceit we've managed to learn to live with and not think much about?
How were you personally impacted by working on this project? As I hope my readers do, I took a look at deceit in my own life. Did it play any part--and if so, what was I going to do about it?
Anything else you'd like readers / listeners to know: DECEIT is a present/past story. The current story features Joanne on her quest to prove Baxter Jackson, the most respected man in town, killed his wife. The past story from six years ago slowly unfolds the story of Melissa, the foster child who came to live in the Jackson household two months before Linda Jackson's disappearance. As Melissa's story unfolds it sheds light on Joanne's current pursuit, with the two stories culminating at the crisis/climax of the book. I like this kind of story. There's a lot of action and tension, but these are fueled by character motivation. In the end, good suspense is not just about action. Suspense starts with the heart.
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