Mini Review: Audiobook ~ The Inn at Ocean’s Edge by Colleen Coble

I love my library — and I love that my library gives me access to accounts like Library 2 Go that has ebooks, periodicals, and audiobooks! My most recent item from there was a Colleen Coble audiobook: The Inn at Ocean’s Edge, the first book in her recent Sunset Cove series. It was so awesome, I had to put this mini review together to talk about my thoughts.

The Inn at Ocean's Edge.jpgThe Inn at Ocean’s Edge is probably my favorite Colleen Coble novel that I’ve read or listened to. The title is poignant and unassuming considering the intensity of the story. It is an excellent example of what a great romantic suspense story should be — a riveting setting, layered characters, and a well-secreted mystery. It kept me guessing until probably the last quarter of the story! And, it was narrated fabulously by Devon O’Day.

On a side note, it was fun seeing the character Beau Callahan from Denise Hunter’s current “Summer Harbor” series (I enjoyed his story in Falling Like Snowflakes.) I think it’s very cool that two different authors share a fictional “world” and have some of their characters meet.

More about the book:

A vacation to Sunset Cove was her way of celebrating and thanking her parents. After all, Claire Dellamore’s childhood was like a fairytale. But with the help of Luke Elwell, Claire discovers that fairytale was really an elaborate lie.…

The minute she steps inside the grand Inn at Ocean’s Edge, Claire Dellamare knows something terrible happened there. She feels it in her bones. Her ensuing panic attack causes a scene, upsetting her parents. Claire attempts to quiet her nerves with a walk on the beach, to no avail. She’s at too great a distance to make out details, but she believes she witnesses a murder on a nearby cliff. When local police find no evidence of foul play, they quickly write off the “nervous” woman’s testimony as less than credible.

But Luke Elwell, home on leave from the Coast Guard, has reason to believe Claire. Years ago when his mother went missing, Luke’s father suspected she’d been murdered. He died never having convinced the police to investigate. So when an employee of the grand hotel doesn’t show up for work, Luke steps in to help Claire track down the missing woman.

As Claire and Luke put together the pieces of a decades-old mystery, they discover that some family secrets refuse to stay buried. And some passions are worth killing for.

Review: “Cold Shot” by Dani Pettrey (Chesapeake Valor #1)

Review: “Cold Shot” by Dani Pettrey (Chesapeake Valor #1)

“But she knew in her heart this case was going to be anything but straightforward. God seemed to think her way stronger than she was.” -pg81

This quote perfectly sums up the tumultuous position of the characters in Dani Pettrey’s latest release, Cold Shot.  It’s the first book in a new series, “Chesapeake Valor”, and it’s a promising start to a dynamic of characters I’m eager read about. Read on for more about the book and my happy review.

Side note: how is this my first book by Dani? I’ve been hearing of the skill and quality of her stories for a while now. I *really need* to go back and catch up on her Alaskan Courage series. That’s all.

About the Book

Cold Shot by Dani PettreyIn college, Griffin McCray and his four best friends had their lives planned out. Griffin and Luke Gallagher would join the Baltimore PD. Declan Gray would head to the FBI and Parker Mitchell would go on to graduate school as a crime scene analyst. But then Luke vanished before graduation and their world–and friendships–crumbled.

Now Griffin is a park ranger at Gettysburg, having left life as a SWAT-team sniper when a case went bad. The job is mostly quiet–until the day he captures two relic hunters uncovering skeletal remains near Little Round Top. Griffin just wants the case to go away, but charming forensic anthropologist Finley Scott determines that the body is modern–a young social justice lawyer missing since spring–and all evidence points to the work of an expert sniper. When FBI agent Declan Gray takes over the case, past and present collide. Griffin soon realizes he’ll need to confront some of the darkest days of his life if he–and those he cares about–are going to escape a downward spiral of murder that crosses continents.

Review

Romantic suspense at its best!

Here’s my take on the great points of this story:

  • Page-turning suspense. Plenty of action — just when you think the characters will have a “normal” scene, something unexpected happens to throw them (and you) into an adrenaline rush. The mystery of the villain was well-shrouded and encompassed in a bit of a twist.
  • Characters are already grounded in their faith in God. The story showed personal growth and emotion of the characters without a major life-changing spiritual experience, though there was a definite theme of trust and hope through the novel. The everyday life and walk with God depicted here lent to its realistic feel.
  • Ensemble cast –kind of. There were complicated histories and relationships between Griffin and his friends who become unlikely colleagues. This is the perfect setup for the series. Not all is revealed from the first few chapters, either, which kept the dynamic of the cast interesting.
  • Romantic chemistry. It’s already there from page 1! Griff & Fin know each other already, so a work-turned-serious relationship feels like a natural step. Though it’s more like protective Griff reacting to a crime threat that just happens to involve the attractive and independent Fin. But it’s fun to see them fight their mutual attraction along the way!
  • The way Griffin and Finley compliment each other. I was impressed by the way their personalities seem “written” for each other, though in some ways they are complete opposites. 🙂 Griff is a compassionate gentleman. Fin is a capable encourager. Both of them dealt with guilt, regrets, and were disturbed by other peoples’ actions. They were each able to support each other in different ways to move toward forgiveness and letting go of fears.

If you’re interested in Cold Shot, check out Dani’s website for fun extras, bonus materials, and a book club kit! Or, see her awesome Pinterest board for Cold Shot.

Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for the review copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review.