Reluctant Runaway, To Catch a Thief Series #2   -     By: Jill Elizabeth Nelson
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Reluctant Runaway, To Catch a Thief Series #2

Multnomah Books / 2007 / Paperback

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Product Description

Why did Karen Webb abandon her husband and newborn baby? Is it coincidence that she disappeared just one day after irreplaceable Anasazi Indian artifacts were stolen from the University of New Mexico Museum of Art and Anthropology? When Boston-based security consultant Desiree Jacobs is called to the scene, her FBI agent boyfriend, Tony Lucano, warns her not to play amateur sleuth. When he joins her in Albuquerque on the copyrighted property pirating case that he is assigned to, it becomes obvious that their cases are connected. And the popular media ministry, The Inner Witness, has more than a little something to do with them. Desi and Tony are scrambling to connect the dots and figure out how Karen fits into the picture if it is not too late to save her. When the horrifying truth comes to light, can they even save themselves?

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 350
Vendor: Multnomah Books
Publication Date: 2007
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.19 (inches)
ISBN: 1590526872
ISBN-13: 9781590526873
Availability: In Stock
Series: To Catch a Thief

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Publisher's Description

Stolen Indian artifacts…A murdered museum guard…A missing woman…A baby in danger…

Only Desiree can unearth the horrifying secret that links them all.

Museum security expert Desiree Jacobs doesn’t mean to get in danger’s path. Really she doesn’t. But when a friend is in trouble you don’t just walk away. No matter what your overprotective FBI agent boyfriend says! So when Desi and Tony’s date at a presidential ball is interrupted by a frantic Maxine Webb, Desi doesn’t hesitate to jump in.

Soon Desi is neck-deep in a confusing array of villains. Did Max’s niece run away or was she taken? Is she still alive or the victim of a perverse ritual? And who wants her infant son–and why?

Then Tony’s organized crime case collides with Desi’s investigation, throwing them both into the path of something dark and sinister. Something that craves blood…

From the streets of Desi’s beloved Boston to the mountain desert of New Mexico, Desi and Tony must rely on God to thwart unseen forces–and save a young woman and her baby from a villain more evil than any of them can imagine.

Author Bio

Jill Elizabeth Nelson takes art seriously–when she’s not having fun with it, that is. The To Catch a Thief series combines her love of the written word with her love of other art forms. She’s thrilled if the adventures that spill from her imagination can raise awareness about art theft–deemed “a looming criminal enterprise” by the FBI. Jill and her husband, Doug, have four children and live in Minnesota.

The latest in Jill Elizabeth Nelson’s unique To Catch a Thief series, Reluctant Runaway continues the legacy of her spirited heroine, Desiree Jacobs. Owner of an art museum security company, Desiree has a knack for landing herself in sticky situations. Her latest caper and a southwestern wind combine to sweep Desi from her cherished Boston to arid New Mexico, where, much to her FBI boyfriend Tony Lucano’s chagrin, she tackles religious fanatics, drug dealers, and murderers.
When her best friend and employee Maxine Webb’s niece Karen disappears from her Albuquerque home, do-or-die Desiree is determined to help. By the time Desi reaches New Mexico, however, the mystery has already deepened. Suspicious evidence surrounding Karen’s disappearance leaves local authorities dubious of Karen’s innocence. Is she really the victim of a dangerous cult? Or is she on the run after robbing the prominent Santa Fe museum where she worked? The lines of truth twist further when Tony’s organized crime case leads him after the same bad guys Desi is tracking.
With characters compiled from casts ranging from a biker gang to pueblo Indians to White House employees, Reluctant Runaway pops with color and life from start to finish. Desi’s lively spirit and courageous (yet tender) heart make her a well-rounded and likeable heroine, while Tony’s self-possession and private manner set him as a perfect contrast to his leading lady. Their differences provide for chemistry and tension which Nelson skillfully interweaves with her novel’s action points. Though at times their quarrels seem over-written, their struggle to find a balance between Tony’s over-protectiveness and Desiree’s risk-taking actions is a very real one. Some of her secondary characters, such as Texan Maxine Webb, seem less realistic, but add diversity to the story.
The spiritual component of Nelson’s book is nothing if not unique. Tackling themes rarely dealt with in Christian fiction, Reluctant Runaway deals with cult activity and darker spiritual themes. Her handling of these issues reveals her as an honest writer unafraid to deal with the seedier side of life. An accurate portrayal of the dangerous reality of cults and their seduction of the hurting and needy is a much-needed revelation regarding the threat they pose today. Nelson also hints at the spiritual warfare many other authors avoid, leaving Reluctant Runaway distinct among contemporary Christian novels.
Nelson also does a skillful job of pulling the reader into the novel with imagery and descriptions that make the story come alive. For a Minnesota author to describe so vividly the beauty and culture of New Mexico is no small feat. Reluctant Runaway’s colorful language, both in dialogue and description, may be its most distinguishing feature. At times, the novel is even grows overwhelming in its use of colloquialisms and clichés. On the whole, however, Nelson’s clever style supplements her quirky storyline and characters.
Combining attractive heroes, a lively plot, and an excellent pace, Reluctant Runaway provides fun as well as food for thought. Those seeking an entertaining and engaging story will find themselves more than satisfied with Nelson’s latest work. – Lauren Peltier, Christian Book

Editorial Reviews

“Nonstop action, danger, and a romance with the tension of a walk on a high wire. You’re in for a wild ride with this story!”
- Lorena McCourtney, author of the Ivy Malone Mystery series

“A fresh voice, strong heroine, and unique plot make Reluctant Runaway a can’t-put-down read. Jill Elizabeth Nelson is an author to watch in the realm of romantic suspense!”
- Susan May Warren, award-winning author of In Sheep’s Clothing

Product Reviews

4.7 Stars Out Of 5
4.7 out of 5
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
Meets Expectations:
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
of customers would recommend this product to a friend.
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  1. New Jersey
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    April 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 3
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 3
    This was interesting until the very end - when it went over-the-top with the cult/cannibilism ending.
  2. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    February 27, 2009
    Fern Moore
    I was glad to find the rest of the books all at one time. I found the first one on the bargain table at Northwestern Book in Burnsville. I really like the story in line that included Christian thoughts along with the story. So, I looked up her web-site and found your web-site and ordered. I have finished reading all 3 books and enjoyed them. Also to note, that the author is a Mn. resident made it more fun to be a part of. Thanks for being there.
  3. Oregon
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    December 26, 2008
    Jill Williamson
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Book two in Jill Elizabeth Nelsons To Catch a Thief series is just as gripping as book one. Nelson packs murder, stolen artifacts, a missing woman, and an endangered baby in the cant-put-it-down novel. Desiree Jacobs is always there for a friend in need, especially when her close friend, Maxine Webb, interrupts a presidential ball with news of her nieces disappearance. Despite her FBI boyfriends objections, Desi gets involved in discovering why Maxines niece would run off. Desi soon finds herself in a mess of villains, eerie rituals, and something sinister. Then, when Tonys case collides with Desis investigation, it is up to them to discover just what bloodthirsty entity is out there. They must rely on God to keep them safe and put all the pieces together before its too late.If youve read book one, this is a must read! The characters are just as interactive as in book one; and I for one, cant wait to get my hands on book three.
  4. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    October 11, 2007
    Trish Perry
    In her novels Jill Nelson has a way of simplifying some of the most prickly issues Christians face today. One of my favorite scenes in her latest novel, The Reluctant Runaway, involves the heroine, Desiree Jacobs and her Native American kidnapper, Pete Cheama, a member of the Zuni tribe. Pete has made plenty of bad choices in his life, and he ultimately blames his mistakes on Christians, whose system was forced upon [his] people centuries ago and has made [their] spirits weak and [their] minds confused. No Christian wants to feel her faith has weakened or confused anyone, so sometimes we refrain from even discussing Christianity. But Desiree merely responds, Jesus is not an oppressor. Right there, conciselythe difference between true Christianity and any faith that demands, rather than invites. Nelsons novel is a fun read, with plenty of suspense and action (and some clever romance, to boot). You could enjoy the entire reading experience without stopping to focus on the choice tidbits about faith with which she occasionally peppers the story. But those tidbits deepen the novel and make it stay with you well after you finish the last page. Id recommend Reluctant Runaway for teen-through-adult readers.
  5. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    August 28, 2007
    Karen Peale
    I've read both books in this series and you can see that the author is "maturing". I most of this book. There was only one area where it was too slow for me. I read literally over a hundred books of christian fiction each year, so I know what I like. I have added Jill Nelson on my "definitely like" list. She is doing a nice job developing the characters as their relationship progresses.
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