Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Fallout by Carrie Stuart Parks: Book Review

 **I received a complimentary copy for consideration. All thoughts are my own. 

Her carefully crafted life is about to be demolished.

After a difficult childhood, Samantha Williams craves simplicity: jigsaw puzzles, lectures at the library, and the students she adores in her role as an elementary school art teacher in the dusty farming community of LaCrosse, Washington.

But when an SUV crashes into the building where she teaches, her entire world is upended. Samantha manages to keep the children safe, but her car isn’t so lucky. Oddly, her purse—with her driver’s license, credit cards, and other identification—is missing from the wreckage.

After authorities discover that the driver in the accident was shot seconds before the crash, Samantha quickly becomes entangled in increasingly strange events that have her constantly looking over her shoulder.

Samantha has long tried to forget the tragedy of her past, but the twisting connections she discovers between the murdered driver, a deadly secret government project, and an abandoned town can't be ignored. Those involved are determined to keep these secrets buried, and they’ll use any means necessary to stop Samantha’s search for truth.

Carrie Stuart Parks is a Christy, multiple Carol, and Inspy Award–winning author. She was a 2019 finalist in the Daphne du Maurier Award for excellence in mainstream mystery/suspense and has won numerous awards for her fine art as well. An internationally known forensic artist, she travels with her husband, Rick, across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law-enforcement professionals. The author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing and painting, Carrie continues to create dramatic watercolors from her studio in the mountains of Idaho.

I really enjoy Carrie Stuart Park's style of writing. Her knowledge of forensics always adds an interesting element, and her stories tend to be as unique as they are entertaining. As such, I couldn't wait to read her latest.

From the start, I was drawn into the action, and initially found myself really thinking I was going to enjoy the main character Samantha... perhaps because like her I enjoy simple things like jigsaw puzzles and famous quotes myself. Still, somehow along the way, I found that I lost that connection. There were a lot of pieces to the puzzle that was this story, so I'm not sure if it was trying to keep it all straight or what happened, but there was certainly a disconnect for me. Still, I found the story intriguing enough to read on and I did find the overall story to be quite interesting. It did move at a slightly slower pace than many others in the suspense genre, but it worked well for this story. I do think if I could have kept that initial connection with Samantha, I would have gotten even more enjoyment, but I still found it to be a good read! 

If you enjoy Christian suspense with just a hint of romance, this is certainly one worth checking out.


"Pleasant words are as a honeycomb: sweet to the soul and health to the bones." Proverbs 16:24