Lisa Waldren is a middle-age, widowed federal prosecutor living in Boston. She has been estranged from her father for many years. He is now retired from the FBI and calls her out of the blue to help him with an old case. The man convicted of killing a civil rights proponent is on death row in a Texas prison and has been given an execution date. Her father is convinced that the man is not guilty. Why has her father kept silent for almost 50 years? Why try to do anything for this man at this late date? Lisa hasn't had much of a relationship with her father after her high school years and even then he was done a lot with his FBI job. Now she has a chance to reconnect with her father maybe, but does she really want that? He has never been there for her when she needed him, so why should she have hope that this will amount to a renewed relationship? He is her father and she decides to help him.
Lisa flies to Texas to go over the case with her father. She soon realizes that indeed the wrong man has been convicted, but who is the real murderer and how can they find proof after almost 50 years? She and her dad begin investigating and ruffle the wrong person's feathers. They realize they are being followed. Lisa has her hotel room searched and her home in Boston broken in to. The past reaches out to tell the future, and a mystery is solved. At what cost? Should the past remain in the past?
This is just a fascinating look back at a small portion of an event during the civil rights movement in 1965. Although fictitious, there are several factual names and events included in the story, which makes it all the more interesting. There is a relationship between a man and woman who aren't married and spending the night together is mentioned, which I didn't really think added anything to the story. Other than that, I thoroughly enjoyed the plot. The addition of Stanley Blackstone and the missing key from JFK's desk while in the oval office added a great deal of intrigue and tension that kept the story moving right along. There were so many good intentions without action or with the wrong action that led to much unhappiness. Everyone seemed intent on protecting someone, which only caused more heartache. There also is a very interesting interview included with the author's father, who really was an FBI agent and worked on the Warren Commission, investigating JFK's assassination. I think it is cool that the picture on the cover is an actual picture of the author at a civil rights march. I think that this story will entertain and engage readers just as it did me.
Lis Wiehl in her new book, "Snapshot" published by Thomas Nelson introduces us to Lisa Waldren.
From the inside jacket flap: Two little girls, frozen in black and white. One picture worth killing for.
The Civil Rights Movement is less than a distant memory to Lisa Waldrenâ€”it is someone else's memory altogether, passed on to her through the pages of history. Her life as a federal prosecutor in Boston feels utterly remote from the marches in the South that changed her father's generationâ€”and the entire nationâ€”forever.
But the truth is, she was there.
When a photograph surfaces showing a blond, four-year-old Lisa playing with an African-American girl at a civil rights march in Fort Worth, Lisa is faced with a jarring revelation: the girls may have been the only witnesses who observed the killer of civil rights leader Benjamin Gray . . . and therefore the only ones who can exonerate the death row inmate falsely accused of the murder.
Soon, Lisa finds herself in the dangerous world her father had shielded her from as a child. After some searching, the Waldrens find the other little girl from the photo and, in the process, uncover conspiracy mere steps away from the likes of Bobby Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, and J. Edgar Hoover.
Based on real events and a photograph snapped by author Lis Wiehl's own G-man father, Snapshot is a remarkably original marriage of mystery and history.
Take a FBI agent and a federal prosecutor who just happen to be father and daughter, add in a case from over 40 years ago that, if they don't solve, an innocent man is going to the death chamber for and you have a formula for action and excitement. Ms. Wiehl has outdone herself here. The hunt for the killer who does not wish to be discovered means the killer will strike again. The father/daughter duo have their own issues to resolve and then there is the issue of race relations and trust. "Snapshot" is an excellent murder mystery filled with marvelous characters, great plot twists, suspense and thrills. This is an exciting book, extremely well paced and suspenseful.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for free from Thomas Nelson. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
In 1965 Lisa Waldren's father, an FBI agent, takes his daughter to a Civil Rights rally. While there she meets another little girl her age. Her father takes a snapshot of the two little girls enjoying each others company. Then the unthinkable happens and all chaos breaks out.
Jump ahead several decades and Lisa is now a successful Federal Prosecutor estranged from her father who is now retired. When he contacts her to help him solve a murder that he has never been able to forget, Lisa at first is unwilling. But eventually she goes to Ft. Worth, TX to help her father and maybe try to understand why he distanced himself from her all those years ago.
James Waldren is now trying to help the man convicted of murdering the Civil Rights activist before he is put to death for the crime he didn't commit. Government as well as local authority cover-ups, and threats to his family caused James Waldren to stop investigating many years before, but now he is determined to right a wrong. But as with all secrets, some people would prefer they be left alone.
I really enjoyed this story. I loved the step-by-step search for the killer and all of the twists and turns to get there. We as the reader know exactly who the killer is, but the "why" is slowly revealed throughout the story. Loved that the two little girls, now grown up, were able to get back together and help each other in the investigation. When I think about the Civil Rights movements for some reason I always think farther in the past than what they really are. I was born in 1965 when the event of the story happened. I honestly can't imagine that time period actually being in my lifetime. The author touches on a bit of the hatred that surrounded the times and some of the events: JFK assassination, Martin Luther King Jr., Viet Nam war etc. Such major events in history while I was just a little girl. Lis Wiehl has written a page-turning snapshot of history, the legal system, and human greed and hatred all wrapped up into an entertaining mystery. If you have never read any of her books before I would highly recommend them.
Don't know why this is considered a Christian book. Subject matter, though interesting, had nothing to do with the Lord-just a mystery like so many other worldly books. Historical facts were educational, but expected it to have a Christian theme.
Snapshot by Lis Wiehl is a work of fiction, about a real picture taken by the author's father. Lis Wiehl's dad is a retired FBI g-man, who was going through some old files and found this picture of Lis and a little black girl. She was captivated by the picture, and came up with the story line for the book, Snapshot.
In the story, Lisa Waldren is contacted by her father, James Waldren, a retired FBI man who is going through some old case files, and asks for his daughter's assistance in helping a man who is in prison, on death row, soon to be executed. Do they have the wrong man in prison? Lisa's dad, who was always so determined to get to the truth, why did he let the case fall silent for so many years? Who really did shoot Benjamin Gray all those years ago? Did Lisa, or her little friend see the actual shooter? You will have to read this book, filled with mystery and intrigue! It kept me up at night to finish the book.
I did enjoy the book, and trying to figure out the mystery. Some of the characters in the book were people the author knows (Lisa Waldren is Lis Wiehl; James Waldren would be Lis' father, Richard Wiehl; William O'Ryan would be Bill O'Reilly) I thought that was fun!
The only thing I didn't like about the book, being published by a Christian company, is that it is mentioned that Lisa's father, James, and his girlfriend have spent the night together on occasions. Thankfully, it does not go into detail, but the thought is there. It is a good story, just not a strong Christian witness.
I received a complimentary copy of the book, Snapshot, from BookSneeze and Thomas Nelson, for my honest review.