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Shadow in Serenity

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  1,322 Ratings  ·  121 Reviews
Carny Sullivan grew up in the zany world of a traveling carnival. Quaint and peaceful Serenity, Texas, has given her a home, a life, and a child. Logan Brisco is the smoothest, slickest, handsomest man Serenity, Texas has ever seen. But Carny Sullivan knows a con artist when she sees one?and she?s seen plenty, starting with her father. As far as Carny Sullivan can tell, sh ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published September 27th 2011 by Zondervan (first published September 25th 2011)
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Terri Blackstock is a bit of a hit-or-miss author for me. I really enjoyed her standalone romance novel, Emerald Windows, and her romantic suspense series, Sun Coast Chronicles and Cape Refuge, but I loathed Last Light, the first in her futuristic Restoration series, so much that I didn’t read the sequels. I felt Last Light was marred by a TSTL (too-stupid-to-live) heroine who gave new meaning to the term 'shallow'. So what about Shadow in Serenity?

Con man Logan Brisco breezes into Serenity, Tex
May 22, 2011 Melanie rated it really liked it
Review on Amazon:
Review on my blog:

4.5 stars

Shadow in Serenity was way better than I expected! I really liked how the story dealt with con artists and scamming people - very unique from most books I've read.

I loved how Carny instantly saw through Logan and realized he was a con man. I also loved how redemption and forgiveness were major parts of Shadow in Serenity.

Overall, Shadow in Serenity was a great read that
Nov 29, 2011 Melissa rated it it was ok
This book was ok, It was a very easy book to read.

The heroine was a bit of a "know it all, if you don't listen to me your stupid" type person which was a bit of a turn off for me but other than her there was some very good characters in this story.

It was your typical con man falls in love and decides to "turn good" and makes the con real story which is why I went with 2 stars rather than 3, just a bit to predictable for me.
Kathleen (Kat) Smith
"A pigeon dropper? What's a pigeon dropper?"

"A huckster. A shyster. A con man. Y'all are making a terrible mistake."

Yet no matter how many times she tried to warn them, not only her own in laws and citizens of Serenity, no one wanted to listen.

Situated in Texas, Serenity was a quaint and peaceful town that some would compare to Mayberry from the old Andy Griffith show. One that was also beginning to feel the effects of the latest downturn in the economy. These are where hard-working, God-fearing
Sep 06, 2011 Christy rated it really liked it
I have been a diehard fan of Terri Blackstock since I first started reading Christian fiction over ten years ago. I have always been able to rely on Terri to provide suspenseful stories that keep me awake until the wee hours of the morning. However, this was not one of her stronger novels.

While the carnival/amusement park idea was unique, I felt that I had to suspend belief for a large portion of the story. Like Carny, I wondered how in the world all of Logan's plans would come to fruition if he
Tamara Tilley
Jun 03, 2012 Tamara Tilley rated it it was amazing
Shelves: terri-blackstock, own
SHADOW IN SERENITY was a unique book that I quickly found myself engulfed in.

Carny Sullivan grew up the child of traveling carnival con artists. She can spot a con from a mile away. And because of that, the minute Logan Brisco blows into town she knows he’s a con just waiting to happen. She calls him on it publicly, but he quickly diffuses her claims. Carny is determined to expose Logan before he fleeces the town of Serenity of everything they have.

As Carny watches Logan’s every move and does he
Nov 25, 2011 Cafelilybookreviews rated it really liked it
Carny Sullivan has more in common with Logan Brisco than she cares to admit. Carny has been raised around carnivals and con men and can spot a hawker a mile away. When Logan Brisco bursts onto the scene in the peaceful little town of Serenity, Texas, Carny smells a rat. She’s determined to expose his underhanded schemes and refuses to be swayed by his charm. She doesn’t want to see the honest, hard-working people she loves scammed out of their money and goes on an all out assault to expose Logan ...more
Nov 15, 2011 Tima rated it it was amazing
Carny grew up traveling with the circus. She learned at an early age to con people out of their money. But she grows tired of the games and running and decides to plant roots in a town named Serenity.
Logan comes to town spinning dreams and charming Serenity's citizens. But Carny can spot a con a mile away and isn't letting him steal from "her" town.

Change is hard. Both Logan and Carny find out that God can help and no matter what the fault He will forgive and make new. It was a new look at how G
Beth - ;)
This book took longer to read than it should have because I had difficulty getting into it. I almost returned it to the library unfinished but decided to stick it out. I was expecting another of Ms. Blackstock's suspense books and it was not; just a basic boy meets girl with a bit of a twist. Logan is a con artist who has come to Serenity with the intention of fleecing the citizens out of their money by promising an amusement park and then skipping town with all the cash. Carny knows a con when ...more
Tamberly Bloodgood
May 15, 2012 Tamberly Bloodgood rated it really liked it
Great book with Christian undertones.
Jun 09, 2017 Stephanie rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 16, 2017 Les rated it really liked it
Interesting and enticing all the way through.
Jul 02, 2013 Antionette rated it liked it
Let me start by saying: I love, love, love Terri Blackstock. I will practically read anything the woman puts down on paper. I love her story ideas, research and writing style. Her books are Christian based, but she doesn't preach at you. She's taken on some personal issues in the Intervention series and wrote them beautifully, making the reader really see the other side of the fence.

In saying all that, Shadow in Serenity is a different animal altogether. The title alone kept me back. It just had
Aug 19, 2011 Katie rated it really liked it
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

This is my first step into Terri Blackstock’s work and, while it wasn’t as edge-of-your-seat suspenseful that I was expecting, it was an engaging story that kept me reading. I thought it was neat that Terri rewrote Shadow in Serenity (original published for the general market) with a Christian message woven in. And she did it so seamlessly—even when I read, at the end, how she’d added the Christian elements, I almost found it hard to imagine the book w
☕ Kimberly
Nov 09, 2011 ☕ Kimberly rated it really liked it
Shadow in Serenity by Terri Blackstock is a faith based novel set in Serenity, Texas. This was a heart-warming novel about faith, love, second chances and the spirit of one small town. I enjoyed the characters Blackstock created in this novel and the wonderful tale she tells.

Carney Sullivan is tough as nails, a good mother and loves the people of Serenity as if they were family. Raised by con artist in a traveling carnival she knows a con when she sees one. When Logan Brisco show up promising to
Sep 26, 2011 Michelle rated it it was amazing
Shadow in Serenity is the type of story that sticks with you after you finish the book. Not only is it well-written, but it made me cry a few times. There were some precious, yet heart-wrenching scenes in this story that rang so true I forgot several times that I was reading fiction. The people in the story seemed real to me. I loved the characters' arcs as well. The theme about childhood always being with you and shaping who you are--but that didn't mean you couldn't change--was very inspiratio ...more
Sep 19, 2011 Carly rated it really liked it
I’ve only read a couple of Terri Blackstock’s books before reading Shadow in Serenity and found this one to be a little different from what I have gotten used to with her books. I will admit that it took some time for me to get into this book. When I first started reading it, I wondered how on earth this story was going to fill over three hundred pages. Frankly, it didn’t sound like much of a story, but that was one of the biggest reasons I wanted to read it. I have read many books that could fi ...more
Oct 27, 2011 Margaret rated it really liked it
Carny Sullivan grew up in the zany world of a traveling carnival. Quaint and peaceful Serenity, Texas, has given her a home, a life, and a child. Logan Brisco is the smoothest, slickest, handsomest man Serenity, Texas has ever seen. But Carny Sullivan knows a con artist when she sees one---and she's seen plenty, starting with her father. As far as Carny Sullivan can tell, she's the only one in town who has his number. Because from his Italian shoes to his movie-actor smile, Logan has the rest of ...more
Trinity Rose
Oct 30, 2011 Trinity Rose rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy books written by Terri Blackstock and this one is very good. It is a book she wrote before she got into the Christian market, but loved it so much that when she could she rewrote parts of this book and had it published in the Christian market.
I really like it because it shows us even the most unfeeling, unloving person can truly want to change and be saved. God isn’t held back. He can even make the vilest person clean and whole.
Carny grew up in a carnavial and saw lots of peopl
Jennifer Jensen
Nov 21, 2011 Jennifer Jensen rated it really liked it
This was a fun read! Terry Blackstock is not an author I’m familiar with, but I did enjoy the story. This is a novel with enough punch to keep you entertained and enough depth to keep you thinking. Carny Sullivan is a woman who is going out of her way to prove that the newest guy in town is a con man. That she knows what they look like all too well is understood, but the town is not as interested in her suspicions as they are in the pipe dreams one Logan Brisco is selling.

Carny herself has been
Lenore Webb
Sep 24, 2011 Lenore Webb rated it really liked it
I was reading Terri Blackstock's book 'Showow in Serenity'. This was my fun read this week. Set in small town Texas (gosh just like where I live), Carny has settled down. Leaving her past the past. Or so she hopes. Knowing that she must guard her previous life from others thus not to be judge she finds that she is pretty aware of what is going on around her most of the time. And those old bells and whistles are clanging when she meets up with Logan. Yes he seems to be cut from the sa ...more
Jettiep Parrish
Oct 15, 2011 Jettiep Parrish rated it it was amazing

When Logan Brisco blew into Serenity Texas, he planned on scamming the people of the town for all he could get, then escape before he was found out. He meets Carny Sullivan, the daughter of a carnival owner, who recognizes him for what he is, because she's seen all the scams, working for her father's carnival, until she left, married and moved to Serenity when she was 17.

Carny tries to tell everyone that he is scamming them, but no one wants to believe her. They want to believe he is representi
Aug 19, 2011 Liz rated it liked it
Carny Sullivan has seen plenty of cons, having been raised by parents who were carnival people and taught her all the tricks. When Logan Brisco blows into her small, close-knit town she knows his promises to the locals of making money in his investment opportunity are nothing but a scam. Carny does everything she can to convince her town that he's a con and refuses to tear down her personal walls of defense. But just when she believes she's got Brisco all figured out, he surprises her.

The book
Oct 06, 2011 Casey rated it liked it
I have to admit I wasn’t as taken with “Shadow in Serenity” as I honestly thought I would be. While portions of this novel drew my attention and had some great insight into the human condition, the novel itself, entire story arc and how it was put together, failed to truly move me.

I knew full and well going into the story it wouldn’t be the typical suspense/murder mystery and I was perfectly fine with that. Where I ran into some snags was how the story came together. Much of the dialogue felt w
Book Him Danno
I enjoyed this story, the writing flowed well and kept my interest. I read this book in one day while doing many other things. Every time I put it down I looked forward to picking it back up. It reminded me a bit of the musical, One Hundred Degrees in the Shade. A con comes to town looking to make a score and instead finds more then he bargained for. The characters were varied, especially the carnival group. A town like Serenity sounds very much like Mayberry and I think that I would love to liv ...more
Dec 09, 2011 Dianna rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
At the age of 17 Carny Sullivan moved into the small town of Serenity hoping to start over, have a family with her husband and have a better life, but her husband died a year after their marriage leaving her with their child, Jason, and no desire to remarry. Carny grew up in her parents carnival, learning all about scams and how to fool people, she even participated in many, so when Logan Brisco comes into town persuading the townsfolk to invest in his “company”, Carny knows its all a scam, and ...more
Bethany Macmanus
Dec 14, 2013 Bethany Macmanus rated it really liked it
This is the second Terri Blackstock book I've read, and although I think it was falsely labeled suspense, it kept me turning pages (I'm a pretty picky reader, and will put a book down if it doesn't do the job it's supposed to do, which is to hold my interest).
Shadow in Serenity is a modern rendering of the Music Man, and a great illustration for me as an author for how to develop conflicting characters--in their motivations, in their Achilles' heels, in their past failures, etc.
The reason I kept
Dec 04, 2011 Kate rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-netgalley
Logan Brisco, a man who never stays in one place too long, landed in Serenity Texas. Once a thriving oil town Serenity is looking for a way to get back on the map. Logan is a very smooth talker, an expert on the ways of words and "get rich" schemes.
Carny Sullivan doesn't buy what Logan is selling. She was raised in a traveling carnival and has seen more con jobs than anyone, her wisdom going far beyond the circus tent. Trying to protect her son Jason from the life she has seen becomes a constan
Jun 12, 2016 JaneReads rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
When I read on the back cover that this was a modern day version of The Music Man, I couldn't wait to read this as The Music Man is one of my favourite musicals. I was drawn into the story right from the beginning. Logan has made some bad decisions in life and has arrived in town as a con man, but the more you get to know him, you can get glimpses that there is a good man inside of him. Carny grew up surrounded by con artists but has lived an honest life in town for the last 9 years. When Logan ...more
Oct 05, 2012 Dianna rated it liked it
Shelves: own
Carney was born and raised to a couple of traveling carnival con artists and was taught at an early age how to pick pocket and con people out of their money. Tiring of the circus life at 18 she ends up in the quaint little town of Serenity, Texas, where she got married, had a child and was widowed. She learned to fend for herself and son by being honest & working hard. So when Logan Brisco blows into town she can smell the con a mile away. Unfortunately, he is so good at what he does he has ...more
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What was Shadow in Serenity first published as... 3 7 Jul 12, 2013 03:55AM  
  • Gone to Ground
  • A Killer Among Us (Women of Justice #3)
  • Deadly Pursuit (Guardians of Justice, #2)
  • Lonestar Angel (Lonestar, #4)
  • House of Secrets
  • The Day of Reckoning (Baxter #2)
  • Water's Edge
  • Heart Echoes (Side Roads #3)
  • Accused (Pacific Coast Justice, #1)
  • The Last Plea Bargain
  • The Shadow of Your Smile (Deep Haven, #5)
  • Lethal Remedy (Prescription for Trouble, #4)
  • Seasons Under Heaven (Seasons #1)
  • The Chase (Crime Scene: Houston, #1)
  • Digitalis (Discarded Heroes #2)
  • To Write a Wrong (Justice Seekers, #2)
Terri Blackstock is a New York Times best-seller, with over six million copies sold worldwide. She is the winner of two Carol Awards, a Christian Retailers Choice Award, and a Romantic Times Book Reviews Career Achievement Award, among others. She has had over twenty-five years of success as a novelist.

Terri spent the first twelve years of her life traveling in a U.S. Air Force family. She lived
More about Terri Blackstock...

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“This town has so many blessings from God, but if we do something stupid out of greed, we could destroy those blessings.” 0 likes
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