In Dee Henderson's novella "Betrayed," Janelle Roberts is freed--thanks to people she doesn't know--after serving six years of a twenty-year sentence for a murder she did not commit. But a murderer is still at large, and Janelle needs to be somewhere safe with someone she can trust. She may not survive another betrayal.
In Dani Pettrey's "Deadly Isle," Tennyson Kent is trapped on the isolated island of her childhood by a storm surge, and she is shocked when the typically idyllic community turns into the hunting grounds of a murderer. Cut off from any help from the mainland, will she and first love Callen Frost be able to identify and stop a killer bent on betrayal before they become the next victims?
In Lynette Eason's "Code of Ethics," trauma surgeon Ruthie St. John saves the life of Detective Isaac Martinez. After a betrayal leads to him getting shot and then attacked while in recovery, Isaac is now a key witness determined to testify. But someone is intent on silencing him--and those around him--forever. Together, Ruthie and Isaac go on the run, desperate to escape the killers hunting him.
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.
Dee Henderson is the author of 27 non-fiction and fiction titles, including Jesus our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus the Truth and the Life, The Good News Project, Taken and the acclaimed O’MALLEY series. Several titles have appeared on the USA Today Bestseller list; Full Disclosure has also appeared on the New York Times Bestseller list. For details visit: DeeHenderson.com
Wow! Each of these stories is amazing, yet so different from each other. I enjoyed them all equally and felt they complemented each other so well. The first story "Betrayal" from Dee Henderson is so fascinating, I loved seeing the process of a cold case break wide open at the hands of a couple of FBI agents who were in the right time at the right place. I thought it was interesting how it switched perspectives to show a broader view of the story. I appreciated that the conclusion was so realistic and didn't take the conventional approach that I expected.
"Deadly Isle" by Dani Pettrey was intense and had great romantic tension! The pace was swift yet the characters felt fully developed as they work to investigate and solve the mystery so tragically close to home. Teni and Callen have a history and the memories that surfaced while they helped each other during the raging storm brought a sense of belonging and relief.
"Code of Ethics" by Lynette Eason also had a fast pace and the sense of working against the clock. I liked that Ruthie was comfortable with law enforcement and their procedures because of her family, even though she is a doctor. There are twists and turns as she and Isaac dodge the killers while searching for the evidence that will prove his suspicions correct. I loved the attraction and bits of romance that were slipped in as Ruthie and Isaac got to know each other while also depending on each other for their lives.
(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)
My star rating of the three stories in the book averages out at around 3.5, but I'm rounding up because the last two were so good.
Betrayed by Dee Henderson: 2 stars Boooooooorrrrrrrrring. Neither romantic nor suspense. Basically a blow by blow of a woman getting pardoned for a crime and a bit about the doctor who is her psychologist afterward. This one didn’t hold up to a reread at all.
Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey: 4 stars A quickie story set during a storm on an East-Coast island. First Teni’s cousin is murdered, but before they can solve the murder, multiple attempts are made on Teni’s life too. Sorting out motivations and suspects definitely kept me guessing.
Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason: 5 stars (and the reason I wanted to reread this collection!) Just as thrilling as the first read was! This one stands up well on a reread. I just wish I could have spent more time with this vibrant couple...like a full-length novel! Isaac and Ruthie are a memorable pair and their story is chock-full of danger and betrayals.
Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for a free reading copy. A favorable review was not required.
What a journey you are about to begin, from one novella to the next, these do not disappoint, and in two of them I was reunited with old friends. Filled with mystery and suspense, we travel in our minds from a woman in jail for a crime she didn’t commit, back on an Island with people being murdered, along with a storm, and then we are back with the St. John family and trouble with some of their own. What a great pairing of authors, and each story can be read alone, but it is really hard to read just one. Don’t miss this one if you enjoy a good mystery, you will get three!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Bethany House, and was not required to give a positive review.
This was an enjoyable novella collection from three of my favorite romantic suspense authors. Each author has a distinct style that is evident in this collection. And the stories are perfect for a quick read.
This story was hard for me to connect with, because there was very little action and the tone throughout was extremely passive. The entire plot felt too stiff, too controlled, which left no room for the characters to have natural reactions to any of the plot points.
Where was the suspense in this suspense book??? The crime was already done and over. Getting a character pardoned from prison was much too easy with everything falling perfectly into place with no bumps along the way. The governor even granted the pardon without hearing any proof or looking at any new evidence, instead relying solely on a man’s word of honor based on his gut instinct and conspiracy theories and one piece of evidence that even he admitted would make the prisoner look guilty rather than innocent. That felt flimsy at best. Were I that governor asked to pardon a convicted murderer, I would want to see ALL the evidence and see if the train of thought through the evidence made sense before signing any paperwork that would pardon someone convicted of murder.
The entire plot felt contrived, orchestrated, toward a specific end. There was no wiggle room for the characters to come alive and make their own choices, so they ended up feeling very flat and one-dimensional. Where was the development? Where was the growth? I wanted to get to know Ann and Paul and Gregory and Janelle along the journey, to feel like they became friends, but that didn’t happen at any point in the story. It always felt like they were two counties away from me, that I was viewing them through a spyglass or something rather than walking right beside them. There was a bit of hot emotion in Janelle, but even that felt contrived as no one else showed any emotion whatsoever, even when she blew up a time or two. Contrived melodrama is not my cup of tea.
My favorite parts of this story were the lake-effect snow, the dog, and the fact that an innocent person was set free from prison.
This really was more of an emotion-recovery book, and I’m not sure what genre that fits into, but it definitely did not feel suspenseful at all.
I miss Mrs. Henderson’s old style of writing, found in the O’Malley Chronicles, which is still one of my favorite book series.
Deadly Isle By Dani Pettrey Rating: 4 stars
Now this is suspense! From the very first page, the action and stakes were high—and they kept rising! The characters were three-dimensional and interesting, and the backstories were inserted in small chunks along the way to help fill in the blanks of the past as we cruised through the present.
The mystery surrounding a murder off the coast of an island during a nor’easter was wonderful. I enjoyed how the weather played a large role in this novella. That was a brilliant touch by the author, and delivered well. The way clues were dropped here and there along the way was great, but I still didn’t figure out who was behind it before the big reveal. Well done, Mrs. Pettrey!
Content: one sexual term, a couple of derogatory terms, mention of a one-night stand (with a drug involved)
Code of Ethics By Lynette Eason Rating: 5 stars
1/3/19 The first book I read in 2019 landed squarely on my favorites list! I'm so happy about that I could just jump for joy. I needed to start this reading year off right, and this book definitely fit the bill.
Ruthie and Isaac were amazing and relatable. Their adventure was great and intriguing, keeping me riveted and flipping pages. While this story is short, it is tall on action and deep in heart. It's a special little tale that should be on everyone's reading list this year (but catch up on the previous books in the series first!).
I can't wait to read the next story, Code of Valor. My copy is sitting on my desk, just waiting for me. Where is yours?
7/9/20 Again, I adored the suspense vibes of this story. The characters were so amazing and felt realistic and as if they could burst into my living room at any second. Such a vivid and entertaining story deserved a second read. I’m pretty sure it’s earned several future readings too.
I enjoy a good novella collection especially when it features three of my favorite romantic suspense authors: Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey, and Lynette Eason. All of these authors have captured my attention in their full length novels, and I enjoyed their past novella collaboration Sins of the Past. I couldn't wait to get my hands on their new collection, The Cost of Betrayal. Even though all three novels have to do with Betrayal of some sort, each individual novel stands alone.
"Betrayed" by Dee Henderson
The novella starts with a familiar couple I was introduced to for the first time in Full Disclosure, Paul and Anna. So if you are familiar with that novel than you might find it enduring to have them come back and try to solve a mystery. This time the mystery centers around a jewelry box that Anna purchases at an auction with a pocket knife inside. With a number of research, Anna finds out the knife belongs to a young lady doing time for murdering her boyfriend. As the story progresses, I watch Anna as she explains her theories to Paul. The story moves pretty quickly and kept my attention. I enjoyed seeing familiar characters return. BUT . . . I felt cheated with the ending. Henderson left us with three different type of endings of how Alex could have died. She really didn't answer the question on who killed him. I read mysteries to see who did it. I didn't get it this time.
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
"Deadly Isle" by Dani Pettrey
The people are completely new, but the setting, I believe, is the setting for Pettrey's new series, so I believe these characters might have a comeback. While the story does move at a quick pace, I think the story was too condensed to be a well-written story. The ending moved quickly, and I had a hard time buying who the bad guy is. The writing is clear, and the tension is top-notch, which proves why Pettrey is top in the romantic suspense genre. I can't wait for her next series.
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
"Code of Ethics" by Lynette Eason
If you are familiar with her Blue Justice series, than the last name St. James should be familiar to the reader. This story is about Ruthie, the surgeon. The sister who didn't become a member of the police force. The tension started right from the beginning and grasped my attention. Eason definitely proves why she keeps writing wonderful suspense stories and keeps her audience's attention. I loved seeing familiar characters and can't wait t read the next book in the Blue Justice series with Code of Valor. The tension is top notch, and I figured out the bad guy before Eason showed me. I can't wait to read more by Eason.
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
I received a complimentary copy of The Cost of Betrayal by Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey, and Lynette Eason from Bethany House Publishers, but the opinions stated are all my own.
The Cost of Betrayal was a good collection of novellas. It starts off with Betrayed by Dee Henderson. I loved her older novels, but was disappointed with Full Disclosure, so I wasn't sure how I would like this one. It wasn't bad, but it was my least favorite of the collection. The mystery was intriguing, but I didn't like the ending.
The second story was Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey. This is the novella I was most excited about when I heard of this collection and it was just as amazing as I anticipated. My attention was grabbed from the first chapter and I didn't want to stop reading. A great read from beginning to end.
The third novella was Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason. I was actually very surprised by how much I enjoyed Code of Ethics. Eason's books have been very good in the past, but I found myself growing tired of a theme I had noticed in several books, so I quit reading them. I was happy that this book was different and I now want to go back and read the Blue Justice series.
All in all, The Cost of Betrayal was an enjoyable read. I recommend it if you like romantic suspense.
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 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.*
Betrayed - Dee Henderson From a writer’s perspective, this was a very interesting story. It was basically a mystery revolving around one character’s unjust sentence—but you never heard her POV. Instead, it was Paul and Ann who realized the fishy schemes and got the girl pardoned and then Greg in helping her rehabilitate. The story was primarily dialogue, a lot of problem-solving and explanation. It took me a while to get into it, but it really worked. I wasn’t a fan of how it ended, but then, if there is a book that continues this story, I guess maybe it concludes there? There were several spiritual discussions and romance was almost non-existent. So yeah, a story I liked on those lines.
Deadly Isle - Dani Pettrey This was my first time to read Pettrey and I definitely want to give one of her full-length works a shot. She was able to weave in a lot of Spiritual depth to this novella and it was pretty solid. Romance was a pretty strong theme in this story—and *slight spoiler* the fact that Callen had dumped her ten years before because he chose to turn to alcohol one night after his dad died; someone slipped something in his drink and he apparently committed adultery without remembering any of it. *spoiler end* Though there was definitely a history, it was delivered in a way that didn’t go into deep detail. The mystery itself was interesting and wrapped up convincingly, even though it was not the most pleasant thing ever.
Code of Ethics - Lynette Eason Maybe it’s just that Lynette is my favorite suspense author right now, or maybe it’s because I actually read the other books in this series so knew of the characters, but this was my favorite novella of the series. It had a good flow, a solid mystery, a complex motive and action-packed climax that was believable. The writer in me appreciated this story. The romance wasn’t really there until the epilogue, which I didn’t mind. The spiritual thread wasn’t as strong as the other novellas in this series. God was mentioned, His will and way referenced, prayer used. But there wasn’t really a take-away lesson from this story.
I am a fan of these three authors so I was giddy with anticipation when I got this book. I love books with both romance and suspense which is what attracts me to these authors and their books over and over.
Of the three books, I would have to say that Dani Pettrey's was my favorite with Lynette Eason's a close second. Both of these books had fantastic pacing and had my heart beating a little faster than normal. I loved how they felt complete and full despite being a little bit shorter than usual novels. I wasn't a fan of this story by Dee Henderson. I felt like it was slow and there was so much missing. The suspense was not there at all. I'm not sure what happened there because I usually really love Dee Henderson's books. I hope there will be more collections like this one!
Content: Some Christian elements, violence (death), kissing
- I received a complimentary copy of this book at my request from the publisher. All opinions expressed are my own.
Another wild ride from Henderson, Pettrey, and Eason! I really enjoyed this collection, although maybe not quite as much as the previous one. It's a close call.
BETRAYED: To be honest, this novella wasn't quite what I was expecting from a romantic suspense collection. It was a little light on suspense with little-to-no action and was definitely light on romance. I didn't mind that, though. I always find Henderson's angst- and drama-free romances so refreshing. The premise of Betrayed was very interesting and I would have loved for it to be a full-length novel. I do wish there had been more conclusion to the story, as the ending felt very sudden and didn't seem to wrap things up much. (Dare I think that was purposeful, as in there will be more to the story eventually?) The characters were very interesting and left me wanting to know more of their story. I also loved the reappearance of Paul and Ann Falcon from Henderson's previous series, Evie Blackwell Cold Case. Overall, a very interesting novella, even if it wasn't what I expected.
DEADLY ISLE: Okay, I'll be honest. From the few books I've read, I'm not really a Pettrey fan, but I'm usually willing to give one of her books a go. This one was definitely better than her novella in Sins of the Past, but it still had its issues for me. The characters and their story was very interesting, and for the most part, there wasn't the angsty romance that I've found par for the course with Pettrey, so a definite thumbs-up there. The story kept me on my toes, and the mystery was very well done. The villain(s?) was definitely unexpected.
There was one major issue with this novella that, of course, just happened to be my favorite pet peeve. Please excuse my ranting for a moment. (potential spoilers ahead -->) So Teni gets shot in the shoulder in the course of the book. The volunteer paramedic\nursing student on the island takes out the bullet and stitches her up. A bit of a stretch for that serious of a wound, but it's an emergency, there's no way off the island currently, so I'll let it slide. But then, directly after waking up after the paramedic patches her up, she's insisting on being part of the manhunt to find the bad guy. First of all, she's probably lost a decent amount of blood, so she's going to feel weak. She's also on hefty painkillers, so her head will feel fuzzy, and she'll probably feel really sleepy. But no, she's fine, she wades through knee-deep water, etc, on the manhunt to find this guy. Did I mention this is all during a huge storm? Not very realistic. Teni doesn't seem at all affected by the bullet that allegedly just missed a major artery in her shoulder and the strong painkillers she's on.
Not very realistic. Having heavily researched, as well as spoken with a doctor about bullet wounds in the shoulder for my own story research, this scenario is highly implausible.
To continue on with the issue, only a few days after getting shot, Teni ends up going diving (I won't say why, as that's more spoilers.). Any person with any medical knowledge at all knows this is not a good idea, as there is a huge risk for infection from the water, tearing stitches and\or ripping open the wound, etc. No person in their right mind would go diving with a gunshot wound in their shoulder.
All that to say, the unrealisticness of that scenario really annoyed me, as it would have only taken just a bit of research for Pettrey and\or her editors to realize that that kind of situation isn't really realistic.
All in all, aside from a few issues, I did enjoy this action-packed novella.
CODE OF ETHICS: As a big fan of Eason’s Blue Justice series, I greatly enjoyed this tie-in novella about another of the St. John siblings. Ruthie and Isaac were interesting and realistic characters, and the storyline was fast-paced and unique, filled with Eason’s trademark action and suspense. At times, I felt that Isaac’s recovery from his gunshot wound was slightly unrealistic, but it still worked. Overall, I very much enjoyed this novella, and look forward to reading more Lynette Eason.
Recommended for ages 16+ CONTENT NOTE:
FTC disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.
A great choice for romantic suspense fans, The Cost of Betrayal truly is the perfect name for this collection. All of the stories deal with people who have been betrayed in some of the worst ways.
The first novella, Betrayal by Dee Henderson, moves at a much slower pace than the other two stories. I really enjoyed the build up as the main characters worked through new evidence to determine what really happened years earlier. I enjoyed the entire story, but ended up feeling like I was left hanging at the end. I personally needed more closure for the entire situation.
The second novella, Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey, was absolutely fantastic. It was fast paced and full of danger. I loved that the two characters used to be an item and their love for each other had obviously never faded away. There were many twists and turns in this story, keeping me anxiously reading to find out who was behind this betrayal.
The last novella, Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason, was also really good. There was plenty of danger to go around as well as questions about who to trust. I enjoyed the way the author wrapped up this story, including the sweet romance that developed.
I definitely recommend this collection to fans of romantic suspense.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
I first met Paul and Ann in Unspoken and it was neat to see them again. I absolutely loved the hero, Greg! The island and all the activities it offered were super interesting to read about, and I loved Greg's dog, Marco! Also, all the different foods that Janelle cooked sounded delicious. The mystery in this story was very good! Overall, I enjoyed this one but it wasn't my favorite of the collection.
Deadly Isle-Dani Pettrey
I am a die-hard Dani Pettrey fan, her name on the cover is all that's necessary to make me automatically want to read anything she writes! I've been eagerly awaiting this novella since I first heard this collection was happening, and oh wow! It exceeded every single one of my sky high expectations! I LOVED IT SO MUCH! The whole story was incredible and I absolutely devoured every single moment! I adore reunion romances and this one was perfection, as was all the incredible suspense. I love to see diverse characters, and it is so fabulous that the hero in this story had Native American heritage, I loved that! I can't wait to reread this story! Overall, Deadly Isle was everything (and more!) that I dreamed it would be, mere words simply cannot fully convey how much I adored every single second! In case all the gushing above isn't enough of a clue, yes, I HIGHLY recommend this novella, and am waiting with bated breath for Dani's next book! I know I say this a lot, but it's so true, Dani's books are total awesomeness, if you haven't read her books yet, what are waiting for? You NEED Dani's books in your life!
Code of Ethics-Lynette Eason
I've read almost all of Lynette's books and I have to say that the Blue Justice series just may be my favorite series of hers! I absolutely adore the entire St. John family, the siblings banter is hilarious and so very real! I was so excited to read Ruthie's story and I LOVED EVERY MOMENT OF IT! I loved how strong and smart Ruthie was, and how even though she was a doctor she thought like a cop! Isaac was such a fabulous hero, and he and Ruthie were absolutely perfect for each other. This story was just so good, I already can't wait to reread it! Seriously, it was nothing but total awesomeness from beginning to end! A phenomenal must read that you won't want to miss!
Overall, this is a fantastic novella collection that will absolutely enthrall fans of romantic suspense! (4.5 Stars!)
I received a copy of this book from the publisher and author Dani Pettrey, which did not influence my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions are one hundred percent my own.
Dee Henderson's Betrayed - This one had an intriguing premise to it. And I enjoyed catching up with Paul and Ann. But I felt that there was something missing. The story didn't feel finished. Rating - 3 stars
Dani Pettrey's Deadly Isle - This was by far my favorite of the collection. I loved Teni and Callen. I loved how they interacted with each other. This one kept me reading. Rating - 5 stars
Lynette Eason's Code of Ethics - This one was a delight to read. I'm already familiar with the St. John family, so getting to know Ruthie better was fun. I didn't expect the twists and turns this one took. Rating - 4 stars.
Overall thoughts on the book:
These are three talented authors. They know how to keep their readers guessing. I always know that I'm in for a good read with these authors. Overall, I enjoyed the book quite a lot.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher on behalf of one of the authors to help with the promotion of it.
I'm a fan of all three authors, and I enjoyed these novellas. Each one was interesting and a quick read. Eason's story was my favorite. It was full of twists and turns even though it wasn't a full novel. Fans of these authors will enjoy these novellas. It's also a great introduction to each author if you haven't read their full novels.
I received a copy of this e-book in exchange for my review. My thoughts are my own.
My thoughts on Betrayed by Dee Henderson: 1/5 stars.
The story started out a little oddly. I would have liked more of an introduction but we started right off in the middle of two people's lives. Paul and Ann are interesting characters, Ann is especially quirky, but fun. I noticed what I always notice when reading Dee's books-- things got a bit too technical Too much shop talk, not enough character interaction. I was a little confused because we weren't given much of a back story for Paul and Ann. I felt like I was missing a lot, which I guess you could credit that to me reading another book in the middle of a series. But other than that I think there was some unneeded information, and sone missing information.
I longed for more romance and mystery. This book was definitely lacking that.
The first few chapters are really boring but it did get better towards the end. Just not by a lot. The characters were cringey and unnatural. There was no relatability or flow to them.
There was WAY too much telling and talking instead of showing and action.
I was also very confused by the jump in scenes. In one scene the characters would be getting ready for bed and then without skipping a beat they'd be eating breakfast! Like what?
I did like the scenes between Paul and Janelle more. I liked Greg, though he seemed to like to hear himself talk. It was mentioned he had a rough past, I love that he accepted it and moved forward He's a very kind and funny, generous guy.
But overall this was a very stiff and boring read. I did not like the ending at all. And I hate to say it, but I wouldn't recommend this story.
My thoughts on Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey: 4.5/5 stars.
I enjoyed this story, though I wish we were included in more of the back story of the characters. I didn't like the jumps of POVs, but it was still very enjoyable.
I liked Callan and Teni a lot. They were friends turned to lovers. Callan made a huge mistake and their relationship came to stop. However, their love did not.
Among the gripping pages of pain and mystery, can the people they are now forgive the people they were then and give it another go?
Love, loss, and faith are the three themes of this book. The suspense will have your heart racing, and the romance will have you sighing with delight.
My thoughts on Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason: 4.5/5 stars
This story was really good! I liked the characters a lot and the relationships were great.
There was mystery, suspense, and I'd say a good, low amount of romance. Definitely not overpowering or underwhelming. (Wait, is that a word?)
I found out a little too late that this was the third in a series. (You've seriously got to start checking Rebekah!!) But it was still very enjoyable You didn't feel like you were missing anything, more like you just wanted to know the other stories.
I really liked Isaac and Ruthie, though they were perfect strangers so I'm not sure why they trusted each other so easily. There were a few things like that that didn't connect but other than that it was fine.
It was fast paced and intriguing, I think my favorite story from the trio. I ran into the problem I always do with novellas-- I wished it were longer!
As always, I looked around for the best deal and that was on CBD!
Thanks so much to Bethany House for a free copy of this book! **all thoughts and opinions expressed are purely my own, I was in no way obligated to leave a positive review. **
Okay so this is going to be a bit of a complex review. I ended up the entire book ⭐️⭐️⭐️ this was my first time reading short stories and I’m not a huge fan. I guess I feel like the resolution just happens too quickly for my taste.
Betrayed by Dee Henderson ⭐️⭐️⭐️ This was my least favorite of the three stories. The first half was super dry and written poorly in my opinion. The back and forth between the characters just felt too much like stream of consciousness and wasn’t pointed at all. The second half of this book was much better. I really enjoyed this story once Greg came into the picture. His character was just really enjoyable to read. The ending was satisfying, but really not a romance.
Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Okay, so the beginning of this one gave me hope for this collection of short stories. It was super interesting right away, which is what I prefer. I really like that we got to hear from the murderers perspective. Plus, the romance was actually present which is cool. This one felt like too much of a story to be a wrapped up as quickly as it was. Which is why I realized I’m probably not a fan of short stories
Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ I really enjoyed this one. Medicine intertwined with law enforcement, super cool. This story was the most Captivating from the first page and kept me on my toes. The chemistry between the main characters was so real. I liked that the romance wasn’t forced. Also, the twists and betrayal actually was something I wasn’t expecting in this one. Loved it! Will definitely be checking out more of Lynette Eason’s work.
Overall, I enjoyed this and don’t regret reading, but can’t say I’ll pick up any more short story collections as I like a little more development and not as quick of a resolution. These are more suspense than they are romance, but still good.
What could be more exciting than a collection of novellas from three of my favourite mystery-suspense authors? The Cost of Betrayal is suspense at its very best. A perfect sample of these three masters’ writing for new readers or simply another collection to enjoy for old fans. Either way, readers are sure to love the three new novellas in this collection.
Betrayed by Dee Henderson
It is so wonderful to drive back into the marvellous writing of suspense master Dee Henderson. Her novella, Betrayed is just as evenly paced and fully-fleshed out as any of her full length titles. As is her style recently, Betrayed focuses on solid, methodical detective work, with just slight hints of romance. I know some readers may not be as happy with the more open-ended ending of Betrayed but I loved it. It is perfect for a novella, allowing the full scope of the investigation and developing romance to play out without being constrained or squished into the timeline of the novella. Betrayed returns readers to Ann and Paul Falcon, this time as Ann stumbles across the evidence from a murder while enjoying a weekend hobby. As she works to untangle the truth of what really happened she has the opportunity to free Janelle, a woman wrongly accused of murder, and giving her the tools and people to ensure a fresh start in life.
I really enjoyed returning to Ann and Paul, as well as being introduced to Janelle and Greg. I loved the mix of murder investigation with the small details of Ann and Paul’s life -from snowball fights to walking Black. I also enjoyed Janelle’s story of coming to terms with her new freedom, meeting and working with Greg and her time on his idyllic island.
Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey
While full of both action and romance, Deadly Isle didn’t grip me in the way other Dani Pettrey novels have. Nonetheless, it is a fun romp, with scary storms, explosions, bad guys lurking in the dark of night and a second-chance love story about forgiveness and over coming betrayal.
It’s turning out to be a bad day for Teni. First her fiancée dumps her, then on a routine morning swim her cousin goes missing and, to top things off, the man to come to her rescue is none other than the guy who broke her heart so many years ago. But Teni will need to accept Callen’s help if she is going to uncover what happened to her cousin and stop the person who seems intent on harming Teni herself.
Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason
Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason returns readers to the St John family from the Blue Justice series. If you are a fan of that series, Code of Ethics fits nicely between book two and the soon-to-be-released book three. Each book and this novella can be read as standalones, so if you enjoy Code of Ethics and haven’t started reading the Blue Justice books, it is the perfect introduction to this amazing crime-fighting family.
Ruthie St John is the black sheep of her family; the only one who is not an officer of the law. Instead Ruthie is a top surgeon. When she repairs the shoulder of a shot cop she is startled to stumble upon another attempt on his life. Issac is determined to find evidence on the cops who have betrayed their oath and fellow officers and who now want him dead. With Ruthie’s help, Issac is still alive - for now. But Ruthie and Issac will need to work quickly if they want to stay that way.
Brilliant suspense and a captivating story rounds out this collection of suspense novellas. Code of Ethics is just as well-written as any of Lynette’s full-length novels (I’m a fan) and a wonderfull addition to both this collection and the Blue Justice series.
I can’t wait to read more from all three authors and highly recommend Betrayed to readers who love inspirational suspense and a touch of romance. Whether you are already a fan of these talented writers or looking for something new, Betrayed will not disappoint.
The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog Madison's Library
I enjoyed this collection of 3 novellas by some of my favourite Christian suspense authors. I thought each story represented well the author's work as a whole. My favourite of the stories was Dani Pettrey's. I think it had just the right mix of suspense, romance, and faith!
"I know the truth is miserable. You don't want to believe it. That's fair. But, again, you need to accept it as a possibility . . . . " Betrayed - Dee Henderson
No one wants to believe that a person whom they have loved and trusted is capable of betrayal, but that's exactly what happens in this extraordinarily well written trio of high level suspense novellas.
And who wouldn't want to be back among Ann and Paul Falcon's circle of friends?
Three of the most popular authors of romantic suspense once again join forces and offer up a set of novellas that are sure to get your heart racing! Sometimes you don't have time to get swept up into a long novel, and these stories satisfied my craving for some well-written suspense that fit into my busy schedule. Pettrey and Eason's novellas are infused with action of the best kind, with scenes that are lively and crackle with tension and danger. But Henderson's novella is addictive in a different way, delving into a cold case and offering up justice in an equally mesmerizing manner, even if there aren't the same sort scenes where the characters lives are in peril. I would be hard pressed to make a firm commitment about which novella I enjoyed better, because each features characters you will quickly grow to care about and find yourself rooting for. But if I had to choose, because I've been devouring every book of Eason's "Blue Justice" series, I really liked reading about another member of the St. John family, Ruthie, as she shows off that she's just as good with a gun as her siblings!
Henderson, Pettrey and Eason once again prove why they are so well known and loved for their contributions to the genre of Christian romantic suspense. They each excel at crafting novels that are completing absorbing and difficult to put down, and "The Cost of Betrayal" is another excellent collection that is sure to please their fans. And best of all, their writings always point toward our God of love and justice and grace, adding a whole other layer of depth to their stories. You would be hard pressed to put down this book and not be left in a thankful spirit for having a God who will set all things right, whether in this world or in the one to come!
If there are any other suspense fans out there, regardless of whether they've read these authors before or not, they should definitely grab a copy of this book for themselves. The authors have delivered the perfect bite-sized bits of murder to devour in those precious moments you can carve out of your day. I award this book a solid 4 out of 5 stars.
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
What a clever theme to bind a collection of suspense novellas together! And how amazing that when you give that theme -- betrayal -- to three different authors they each come up with a totally different twist on it! That's literary awesomesauce right there. But it gets better because each novella has the same 'oomph' that you'd find in a full length novel! Incredible pacing filled with tension and danger and a trail of clues to be pieced together. I read each novella in one page-turning frenzy of a sitting!
Henderson's "Betrayed" features Ann and Paul Falcon (one of my favourite suspense 'power' couples ever!) as they unexpectedly stumble onto a mystery that leads them to question a murder sentence. Lots of scrumptious police procedural stuff that I find so fascinating. And that ending...phew...I wish I could say more but not going to post any spoilers!
There is something deliciously shivery about a super storm that cuts off communication to the outside world. Especially when a killer's on the loose. Cue the sinister background music and grab your security blanket and some soothing chocolate before you hunker down with Pettrey's "Deadly Isle." Love the mix of romance and suspense and the breathless race to find a killer!
Blue Justice fans will be thrilled to get up close and personal with the St. John family again in Eason's "Code of Ethics". A definite edge-of-your-seater has Ruthie (the only sibling not in law enforcement) gets swept up in a dangerous web of corruption as she strives to help a wounded patient. Of course, it isn't long before her sibs gets involved in an unusual kind of family reunion. Great suspense liberally dosed with romance -- and some great sibling humour!
Book provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Inc.
I wanted a little more resolution or action from Dee’s novella. It’s an interesting take on life after a wrongful conviction is corrected, but I miss the suspenseful romance style of the O’Malleys and her military series.
Dani’s story has that style in spades, and I hope Callen and Teni show up in her upcoming Coastal Guardians series! I wouldn’t mind catching up with these characters.
Lynette’s Blue Justice novella is sweet and suspense-y, and Issac is one swoon-inducing character, y’all. I know this changes with every new book I read in this series, but Ruthie is my favorite St. John. :) Spunky and compassionate, it’s now completely clear how she fits with the rest of them. (On a #NoSpoilers note, I’m happy for Derek, but I’m REALLY hoping for a full-length Derek book, and this story made that potentially unlikely. Please please please can we get a Derek book?)
Ann and Paul Falcon from other books by Dee Henderson, are featured in this novella. Ann finds evidence that helps pardon a woman that has been in prison for murder for 6 years. They enlist the help of a friend and doctor to help Jenna re-acclimate into society. Little by little they reveal pieces of her case that helped set her free, but Jenna can't believe who they suspect as the real murderer.
I truly enjoyed reading this story...except for the ending! With this being a novella I'm wondering if we will get more in a future novella or even in a full-length book, but I definitely was disappointed. But, on to the good. I love how Dee Henderson explores the emotions of her characters, how she describes each step that Jenna went through on her road to becoming a normal citizen again. I love how she took us through Ann's process of coming to her conclusions about Jenna's case. I also love how many important people Ann and Paul know! They can get stuff done! And Jenna's doctor Greg was so calming and I would definitely love to read more about him! The ending of the story was unsatisfactory to me because I felt like there was no closure. No closure for Jenna, and no closure for the case. I felt like I was left hanging. I definitely would have liked this to have been a full-length novel and explored more of Jenna and Greg's relationship, her recovery and definitely closure with the case.
Deadly Isle by Dani Pettrey
A small island community, a hurricane, and a murderer on the loose...what more could you ask for? Tennyson Kent owns a small island, her fiance just broke off their wedding, and she just found her cousin dead. A very exciting start to this novella by Dani Pettrey.
Callen made the biggest mistake of his life years ago when he broke Teni's heart. Can he keep her alive long enough to apologize and try to win her back?
This was an exciting read right from the beginning. I think the romance between Teni and Callen was a little rushed, but since they had a prior relationship it didn't bother me too much. There were a couple of people I suspected may be the "who-done-it" including the actual "who-done-it" person. Once again, I definitely would have enjoyed this as a full-length novel. But for a novella it kept me turning the pages and my heart racing at the conclusion!
Code of Ethics by Lynette Eason
When detective Isaac Martinez is brought into the emergency room Ruthie St. John is one of the doctors on duty. With a gunshot wound to his shoulder, Isaac is rushed to surgery. Later Ruthie stops by Isaac's room to check on him and catches someone trying to kill him. Ruthie manages to call for help and the would-be killer escapes. Isaac insists on leaving the hospital and Ruthie has no other choice but to help him. Isaac doesn't know who of his fellow officers are trying to kill him, but he insists on going to find someone who has evidence to prove his claims. With lives in danger, bullets flying wherever they go will the two of them, with the help of a couple of Ruthie's brothers, be able to find the proof they need before the bad guys succeed?
Another page turner! And it was definitely fun to read about another St. John sibling! Again, I think that this could have been a full-length novel, but for a novella it was well-developed and definitely exciting. I loved both Ruthie and Isaac. Ruthie's sassiness and spitfire personality was fun to read. CODE OF ETHICS was entertaining and exciting.
Three exciting novellas by three wonderful authors! I highly recommend THE COST OF BETRAYAL if you love fast-paced/suspense-filled/novella-reads.
The first 40% of the book is a crime fiction by Henderson. It had no suspense or romance, just an old crime. The first third of the story was Ann Falcon stumbling across the missing murder weapon from a closed case--the murderer is already in prison. Since the weapon is in an unexpected spot, she looks into the case. This took the form of Ann telling her husband possible scenarios based on the evidence, then skip to their next conversation where she tells him new evidence and all of the possible scenarios, and so on. Slow pacing. When we get to the release of Janelle, the innocent woman, it's all about them telling her how hard her adjustment to normal society will be, all the arrangements they made for her, and her adjusting. Janelle did briefly confront the suspected murderer, but she didn't believe her friend did it. While interesting in a way, this story was too slow-paced to really engage me, especially as
Pettrey's story started with a murder and the suspense never stopped. Someone repeatedly tries to kill Tennyson while she and Callen (another law enforcement officer) investigate the crimes. She and Callen have known each other since they were children, and they fall in love again as they work together. Tennyson questions why God allows suffering but learns to trust God even in hard times.
Eason's story also started with suspense and never let up. Surgeon Ruthie isn't about to let crooked cops kill Detective Martinez after she dug a bullet out of him. On the run while trying to find proof against the crooked cops, they make a good team. They're attracted to each other and act on that once the bad guys are stopped. Occasional prayers to God for help. There was no sex or bad language. I enjoyed the last two stories and would recommend the novel because of them.
I received an ebook review copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.
Title: The Cost of Betrayal Authors: Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey, Lynette Eason Pages: 334 Year: 2018 Publisher: Bethany House My rating: 5+ out of 5 stars Unbelievable! Three truly talented authors write three novellas that are filled with suspense, thrills, faith, action and more. Each accomplished author has written many novels individually that are truly magnificent to read, so if you’re not familiar with them look up their novels and dive right in! The three novellas aren’t tied together, and they are unique and mesmerizing! Dee Henderson’s story is titled, “Betrayed”, and I enjoyed the plot of a couple, one who works for the FBI while the other is a retired police officer who are at an auction. The couple, Paul and Ann, aren’t seeking anything in particular just enjoying being together without a crisis on their plate. Of course, that is until Ann chooses a box of miscellaneous items to hopefully set up her next painting scene. What it does though has set them on a path of discovery of a murder and the woman who supposedly was the culprit. Dani Pettrey offers readers “Deadly Isle” where two cousins are on an island swimming towards a buoy. Tennyson and her cousin Julia have raced toward this mark for as long as “Teni” can remember. When she arrives, Julia is no where to be found. However, a storm is on the horizon and there is blood on the buoy, a lot of it but no one is around. Now, there’s a good teaser for this gripping murder mystery along with so much more to the story that readers will get to discover. Lynette Eason brings to the audience a tale entitled, “Code of Ethics”. Like Dee and Dani, Lynette is a master of suspense and telling gripping tales. A surgeon saves the life of a detective who was shot while on duty. Ruthie goes in to check her patient only to find an intruder there trying to put something in the IV. The patient, who is a detective, is trying to leave the hospital because he knows his life is in danger. Isaac had reported a fellow officer when he caught him stealing from the evidence room. While it was the right thing to do, there are those who don’t agree with Isaac, and others who want to kill him. When I started the book, I kept reading until I couldn’t keep my eyes open to finish, that is until after a refreshing nap! All three stories are standalones and very well written. They entertain but they also bring a sense of adventure and will keep you captivated until the very end! Read, enjoy and tell others you know about this fantastic collection of three novellas!
A collection of fiction by various authors often reveals differences in writing style. That is the case here.
The first novella, Betrayed, is from Dee Henderson and is a very mellow one. There is really no suspense nor is there any romance. A retired Ann and her FBI husband Paul are the main characters. (They met in Full Disclosure.) Much of the plot revolves around their calm actions and calm discussions. An interesting aspect of the narrative was an exploration of the psychological issues one must face when being freed after having been in prison for six years.
The second novella, Deadly Isle, is a true romantic suspense. The story starts out with a murder and the action stays high throughout. Pettrey does a good job of building the suspense. The action takes place on a Delaware island and it was interesting to learn about island life.
The last novella, Code of Ethics, is another suspenseful one. It was a little hard for me to believe that a trauma surgeon would help a wounded policeman escape the hospital and shelter him. But then, Ruthie is part of the St. John family who readers have met in the Blue Justice series. Ruthie's mother is the chief of police and all of her siblings are in law enforcement. Once the action got going, it never stopped. There is great suspense and a good budding romance too.
Reading a collection like this one is a good way to sample authors and see if you like how they write.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
I'm not always a huge fan of novella-length stories, but this collection is well done in general.
"Betrayed" by Dee Henderson is by far the weakest of the three stories and what made me average the rating as 3 stars. Henderson's overly wordy and analytical style of writing does not lend itself well to a novella. Every piece of evidence, feeling, possibility, action is examined from all sides, sometimes multiple times. This potentially would have been all right in this story had there actually been a conclusion or ending, which there is not. Crime is not solved in the end. Plus, the romance between the main characters is implied to be possible in the future, yet it doesn't happen during the course of the novella, nor should it since they are patient and therapist and I find it to be a grey area of ethics that it could even be considered appropriate after their therapy has ended. 2/5 stars "Deadly Isle" by Dani Pettrey is fast-paced and intriguing. There are many possible villains and the romance and suspense balance is excellent. The relationship feels naturally developed and the mystery kept me guessing. 4/5 stars "Code of Ethics" by Lynette Eason is another exciting thrill ride. From the first page to the last of this story there is action and a puzzle to solve--with an unpredictable conclusion that will fool even the most astute mystery readers. 4/5 stars
Both Henderson's and Eason's novellas contain characters from other book series, but they are easily read as stand alones and you won't miss anything.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.