Saturday, December 21, 2019

Deadly Deceit by Natalie Walters {A Book Review}

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own.

Independent and tenacious journalist Vivian DeMarco is back in Walton, Georgia, for one reason--to do her job and get out. When her boss suddenly dies under suspicious circumstances, Vivian's only hope for finding the truth--and the next big story--is small-town law enforcement's lanky poster boy, Deputy Ryan Frost. But the deeper they dig, the more twisted the truth becomes, and Vivian finds herself fighting for not only answers but also her life. False leads, incriminating emails, and someone called The Watcher force Vivian to confront the secret of her past and decide: How much is she willing to risk for the sake of a headline?

Natalie Walters is the author of Living Lies. A military wife of 22 years, she currently resides in Hawaii with her soldier husband and their three kids. She writes full-time and has been published in Proverbs 31 magazine and has blogged for Guideposts online. In addition to balancing life as a military spouse, mom, and writer, she loves connecting on social media, sharing her love of books, cooking, and traveling. Natalie comes from a long line of military and law enforcement veterans and is passionate about supporting them through volunteer work, races, and writing stories that affirm no one is defined by their past. Learn more at

I must admit that the first book in Natalie Walters' Harbored Secrets series- Living Lies has been sitting in my to read pile pretty much since it's release... but unfortunately I hadn't gotten around to reading it quite just yet. After reading Deadly Deceit, it has certainly moved it's way up to the top of the pile! If you haven't read that one, I would highly suggest going back and starting with it first. You won't be lost if you don't... but this book was so fantastic, that I'm certain you'll want to read the entire series. While there are no major spoilers that would keep you from enjoying the stories out of order, there are several references made to book one that I imagine will mean more if you've read them in the proper order.

From what I have gathered, our lead characters in Deadly Deceit- Vivian and Ryan- are first introduced in book one. It references this initial meeting and impression, but it is in this story that we really get to know them better and more important get to see their romance take off. I loved the romance aspect of this story, and found the banter between the two was very well written and enjoyable to read. They were both a little bit nerdy with references to superheroes and Star Wars thrown in throughout. This to me really set these characters apart from those we typically read about in romance novels. Their relationship was believable and I enjoyed their chemistry.

If romance isn't your thing... well, I'll be honest this truly does fall into the romantic suspense category with the perfect blend of both... but there is still plenty of action and suspense to keep you invested in the story! From the very beginning, I was drawn into the suspense. In many ways the idea of this villain- The Watcher- who has discovered people's secrets and used it to his advantage- reminded me of another Christian thriller novel that came out earlier this year--- The String. But that's about where the similarities end! I feel like that one was a much darker read, and this one to me was just much more enjoyable. I loved that we were introduced to such a wide variety of characters and victims, keeping me guessing who the bad guy could possibly be. It took quite some time to figure out the who, and ever after that it took longer to put all the pieces together. Woven in with the romance and the suspense, there were also some really great messages about truth and abandonment...and the effects of both. It was a beautifully written story, and one that I would certainly recommend. I cannot wait to read more in this series!


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