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Clear Confusion

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What am I going to do, God? Who am I?

Charlotte Hallaway needs to come to terms with her father's death. He had been her only family, and she wasn't handling her grief well. It was just supposed to be a few weeks of peace and quiet to process it all, but then she saw them-a drug deal and a murder within seconds of each other.

And they saw her.

Now running for her life, Charlotte boards a bus to escape her pursuers and wakes up the next morning in the woods of Jennings, Georgia, without a memory of how she got there or of who she is. All she knows is an underlying fear she can't seem to shake.

When two hunters find her battered and scared, can she put aside the clear confusion she's experiencing to trust them? She wants to trust them, especially Nicholas, but fear is holding her back. Trust is incredibly hard when one is so clearly confused. Could it be he and his friend are not who they claim to be?

Who are they really . . . and who is she?


Published July 1, 2019

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About the author

Kathy M. Howard

3 books9 followers
Kathy M. Howard resides in south Georgia with her husband and two children. Somewhere between homeschooling, sideline mama-cheering, chocolate chip cookie eating, and hanging out with family, she enjoys a good book on a rainy day.

She loves the Lord and wants to share Jesus where she can, even in her books. By God's goodness and with the support and love of her family, she hopes to continue writing for Him for many years to come.

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Displaying 1 - 21 of 21 reviews
Profile Image for Susan.
1,112 reviews185 followers
July 27, 2019
Clear Confusion

Kathy M Howard

CLEAR CONFUSION is the first book I've ever read by Kathy M Howard and it definitely won't be the last. The twists and turns keep coming and I had to know how it was going to end! Every time I thought I knew where this story was going, a few pages later, Ms. Howard threw me for a loop and I knew I was wrong!

CLEAR CONFUSION is a quick read and unputdownable! Charlotte Hallaway has just lost her dad and needs to come to terms with her loss. She boards a bus to get away, but during one of the scheduled stops Charlotte's life changes big time. While waiting to get back on the road again, she witnesses a drug deal gone bad that now includes a murder. If you are looking for a great story with lots of mystery to pull you out of your book slump, you can’t go wrong with CLEAR CONFUSION . I’m so excited to read more by Kathy M Howard.

The twists and turns in CLEAR CONFUSION are going to keep you up late into the night trying to figure it out. One minute you believe you know what happened to Charlotte when she wakes up in Jennings, Georgia with no memory of who she is or how she got there and the next you are sitting there shaking your head, wondering what the heck just happened. Once you start reading, trust me, you aren't going to be able to stop! When everything is finally revealed, well, you won't believe it! I loved the friendship that brother and sister, Nicholas and Nellie offered Sydney/Charlotte. They both want her to regain her memory even if it means their new found friend will be leaving them.

CLEAR CONFUSION has Charlotte confronting and dealing with her past even if she doesn't want to. Charlotte can't remember anything but she does know her relationship with God is very strong. I thoroughly enjoyed reading CLEAR CONFUSION . There is so much going on in this story, but Ms. Howard does a wonderful job of weaving all the pieces together. I loved how there was a new surprise in almost every chapter and really kept me guessing. More than once I wanted to be in Jennings Georgia with my new found friends! Once you finish devouring this story, you are going to want to tell everyone you know about this awesome story of Christian romantic suspense at its finest!

I received a complimentary copy of this book through JustRead Tours. All opinions expressed are my own and were voluntarily given.
Profile Image for Suzie Waltner.
Author 7 books107 followers
July 19, 2019
This is the first book I’ve read by Kathy M. Howard. I’ve also been in a romantic suspense zone lately, so there was a lot to compare this one to. I believe Clear Confusion is more a romance with a touch of mystery/suspense thrown in.

The story has a lot of potential—a woman who witnesses a crime then loses her memory—but it didn’t quite deliver for me. There wasn’t enough tension for my taste, and I figured out who the players were fairly quickly. Too often, Sydney is simply told what’s going on instead of uncovering it for herself. And there was a lot of head hopping (not a defined POV from one character but instead jumping from one character’s thoughts to the next).

There were, however, some high points to the story. First, there’s Nicholas and Nellie, whose friendships with Sydney are formed fast and firm. This brother and sister welcome her into their lives and stand beside her as she struggles with her memory loss and who she is. Then there’s Sydney’s faith. Despite not remembering most things about her life, her relationship with God is firmly cemented. In the discouraging and dangerous times, she places her trust in Him. And in the sweet times of contentment, friendship, and love, she praises Him.

Readers who are overwhelmed by the fast pace and violence of some romantic suspense reads may enjoy this more moderately paced story. There is some violence at the beginning and end of the book but it’s minimal in comparison.

Disclosure statement:
I receive complimentary books from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including NetGalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
Profile Image for Marie.
458 reviews19 followers
July 31, 2019
“Clear Confusion” is a Christian, contemporary, romantic-suspense novel by Kathy M. Howard.

Thank you in advance to JustRead Tours and Ambassador International for this copy to voluntarily review. A positive review was not required, all thoughts are my own.

“Clear Confusion” centers on Charlotte Halloway who recently lost her father. Due to the fact he was her only family and she wasn’t handling her grief well, she was on a bus trip to clear her mind and take some time to process everything. That was until a bus stop that led her to being a witness to a drug deal and murder. She then wakes up in the woods of Jennings, Georgia with no memory of how she got there or who she is. And, she doesn’t remember the crime she was a witness to either.

Charlotte is found by hunters Nicholas Nelson and his friend Vincent Cobb. It is Nicholas, along with his sister Nellie, who takes her in while she works on getting her memory back and to recover from some sort of “accident” she doesn’t remember. As Charlotte doesn’t know her real name, she adopts the name “Sydney”. This proves a tad problematic later on in conversations and identifying the characters in a scene.

As Charlotte struggles to remember her name and what happened, the Nelson family is struck by tragedy. It is at that time that Sydney/Charlotte is told, rather than learns, what happened about the murder and drug deal. She suddenly remembers her real name and contacts the police who already know what is going on.

Charlotte is asked to stay in Jennings – not only for her safety, but to help the police. She reluctantly agrees. As she stays there, she grows closer to Nicholas. But, she is unaware that the real threat that brought her to Jennings is right there, and close to Nellie.

While I enjoyed the characters and premise, I had a problem with the story wrapping up too quickly. The story starts off April 7 at 1:15am, with the concluding events on/at April 23rd at 1:45am. Thus, the story itself is only about sixteen (16) days long.

With regard to the police department scene – a detective or someone would’ve (or should’ve) had Charlotte examine mug shots or consult with a sketch artist to make sure she was talking about the same people as they were. This would prove problematic in a court room when it comes time to testify. As someone who studied Criminal Justice, it doesn’t sit quite right with me.

Also, there was no formal statement taken as most of it was done on the phone, the detective should’ve at least taken a formal statement for her to sign. There was also no offer for Charlotte to talk to a counselor to make sure she was all right and mentally healthy to do what was asked of her. She had been having issues handling the death of her father, witnessed a murder, had a traumatic accident, and had just gotten her memory back.

In addition, the police usually go to more lengths to protect “material witnesses”, especially one as essential as Charlotte. While not 100% safe, they usually work hard to assure their safety.

As I understand the book was more of a romance, it did have suspense elements and I expected a bit more in the way of an investigation. There was room to build the story up with a bit more tension and suspense, perhaps a bit more realistic encounter with the police detective.

The relationships with Nicholas and Nellie were heart-warming, endearing, and inspiring. It definitely showed how faith in God works, highlighting both Nicholas and Charlotte’s relationship with God in not only good times, but bad as well. His with what is family was going through and Charlotte with what she had been through.

The book isn’t a long read, the paperback version comes in at just 234 pages. The chapters tend between very short and very long. The first one was a challenge to get through at 55 pages long. The second was five (5) pages in comparison. Chapter five (5) was about 50. After that, they tend to pace themselves out pretty evenly, except for chapter nine (9). I mention this because some people like to stop reading at a chapter and at over 30+ pages per chapter, it can be tedious.

One final issue was two of the names in the book were quite interesting – Bob Crane (a well known actor who met a rather suspicious end) and Tom Jones (a well known singer).

Despite the faux pas, it was a delightful read and I would be interested to see where the other characters (Nellie and Vincent) end up since the two main characters also seem to have a “happy ending”.
Profile Image for Susan Wachtel.
128 reviews3 followers
July 27, 2019
Gripping Suspense, Romance and Grounded in Faith

Clear Confusion is the first book I’ve read by Kathy M Howard and what a great introduction into this author’s work. I loved this book!

Just who is Charlotte and what in the world did she see that caused her to flee? How did she end up in a tree in the forest, scratched, bruised and hurting? Who are these men that awakened her? Friends or foes? Most of all why can’t she remember anything? Not even who she is or where she came from?

From the get-go, the reader will be dropped into the middle of a suspenseful story that will grip you until the very end. The truth about what happened to Charlotte will be unveiled as she has to trust and depend on Nicholas Nelson and his family as they provide a safe haven for her.

I love mysteries and suspense and this book is filled with both. But it doesn’t stop there, the story and characters are well developed. I loved that the Nelson family were kind, decent and caring people that come alongside Charlotte when she is vulnerable, hurting and doesn’t know who she is. Romance is a part of the story and developed slowly as Nicholas is interested in Charlotte, but he doesn’t rush her, instead he gives her the time to heal and remember first.

What I appreciated most about Clear Confusion is that the Christian faith and the Gospel are woven throughout this story. Though Charlotte didn’t know who she was, she knew that God and Jesus Christ were part of her life. Even in her fear, she knew she should pray and read the Bible. Faith is a big part the Nelson family’s life too.

I appreciated that Kathy Howard didn’t have the characters make stupid decisions that put themselves in danger to advance the story or heighten the suspense. Her characters were smart and reasonable. I loved that the Gospel of Christ was clearly presented in this book and how faith was lived out by the characters in what they said and prayed and how they lived their lives.

While I suspected who the bad guys were, there remained some mystery because, until the end, I didn’t know who two of the villains where and how they were connected to other characters.

Clear Confusion by Kathy M Howard was a great story. Interesting, filled with suspense and made just right by characters living out their Christian faith. I give Clear Confusion a big thumbs up and look forward to reading more of author Kathy M Howard’s books in the future.

I would like to thank Ambassador International and Just Read Tours for providing a complimentary copy of Clear Confusion. I was under no obligation to give a favorable review. The views expressed are solely my own.

Profile Image for Laura.
425 reviews24 followers
July 26, 2019
I thoroughly enjoyed Clear Confusion by Kathy M. Howard and, though this is the first of her books I’ve read, it most certainly will not be the last. Howard writes a well-developed story with engaging characters and just the right amount of tension for a romantic suspense.

Dealing with her grief over her father’s death, Charlotte Hallaway decides to travel, hoping for a place of peace and quiet in which she could try to come to terms with idea that she is the only one left of her family.

Woefully unprepared for what she witnesses in a department store along the way, Charlotte runs in fear and hops on a bus. Waking up in the middle of the woods in Jennings, Georgia not only does Charlotte not remember who she is, she doesn’t remember the drug deal and murder than occurred right before her eyes.

Finding a battered woman unconscious in the woods was not quite what Nicholas expected. Along with his friend, Nicholas obtains the medical care she needs but when he finds out she has no idea who she is, he offers Charlotte a place to stay as she recuperates, his sister’s place. Realizing that the young woman is frightened, Nicholas attempts to be a friend but he is so stunned by her beauty and sweet nature, his feelings soon become quite different than just friendship.

I highly recommend Clear Confusion; I suspect the writing world is going to see quite a bit more of Kathy M. Howard!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via Just Read Tours and am not required to write a positive review. All thoughts and opinions therein are solely my own, and freely given.
Profile Image for Erin.
1,431 reviews6 followers
July 25, 2019
My Thoughts on Clear Confusion:
Fear is a very powerful thing. It has the power to motivate us and push us onward but also the power to paralyze us. Can it also make someone forget things? Is danger always imminent when we have a sense of fear?
I keep finding new authors that I have to have to have to follow. Once you read one book by them you know that they're amazing and you just have to binge the rest of their books. I can't be the only one who does this right?

There is a lot going on in the story. You're getting romance. Then you've got some murder/mystery/suspense going on. But the biggest part of the story is going to be romance/friendship with a hint of mystery thrown in.

Great read if you're wanting some mystery for a night when you're home alone and it's storming. Just enough to be a bit spooky but not enough to make you want to hide under your covers or call the cops every time the thunder booms.

Loved getting to know Charlotte as she figures out who she is and what happened to her. Nicholas and Nellie are solid Christians and great character additions. Plus Charlotte has to have a love interest and Nicholas fits that bill very very well.

I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Publicity Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC regulations.
Profile Image for Necee.
355 reviews
July 26, 2019
Clear Confusion explained this book perfectly. It was confusing at times to know what was going on, but the author pulled everything together by the end. I will say the point of view was confusing at times, but maybe that was the author’s purpose. This was a murder mystery that was interesting but not overwhelming… one that I wouldn’t be afraid to read in the middle of the night. It had an engaging storyline and kept me wanting to see what happened all the way till the end. Some of it wrapped up a little too smoothly, as I would have liked to know more. I love the characters, especially Nicholas and his sister Nellie. I loved how they showed compassion and encouragement in helping Sydney work through the amnesia. I also love Sydney, who did not allow fear to completely overwhelm her. She definitely struggled with fear in the midst of grief and had a hard choice to make. I love that she didn’t allow her fear to overcome right decision making. That she chose to stand against evil to do what is right. I loved Nicholas’s heart for her. Though I do feel that this book probably could’ve been developed a little bit more, it was still a good read. I would recommend it for mystery romance fans with a faith element woven into the storyline. I’d also recommend it to those that maybe don’t like some of the thriller type of mysteries. Another reviewer likened it to a Hallmark mystery and I agree.

I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Rachael.
621 reviews
July 26, 2019
Clear Confusion has some great character development and a good plot. The story has a good flow to it except for the few times the point-of-view quickly changes. I was use to that further on in the story.

“...the simple fact that she also knew Jesus was a huge encouragement. She felt strangely strong and confident in that memory alone.”

This is a read for those who enjoy romantic suspense or who enjoy a strong faith theme in their reads. The faith part and the references to forgiveness, mercy, grace and more was well done and definitely puts this book into the Christian genre. I enjoyed the faith aspect of the story very much.

I had much of it figured out, but the ending was a surprise. That’s quite an accomplishment since I read a lot of suspense books. Of course, the book gets its happily ever after for the main characters. However, the secondary chars story is left open. I wouldn’t mind reading that story.

If you like romantic suspense, them I recommend this read. It was a good, enjoyable read with a lot of faith elements that makes the reader feel good once the story concludes.

I received this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Robin E. Mason.
Author 10 books72 followers
August 9, 2019
Oh the twists in this story! The opening jerked this reader right into the story—and held me fast, the tension flipping page after page.
The way Ms. Howard introduced Charlotte’s amnesia shrouded the reader in confusion and darkness—exactly what Charlotte was feeling. And the fear that held her memory hostage was palpable.
The shards of her memory that surfaced came in flashes and slivers. With no other real options, Charlotte had no choice but to trust those who were caring for her. And with that trust, came a bond and friendship.
The Gospel woven neatly into the fabric of the story, giving an added depth and dimension to the connections Charlotte was feeling, and helped restore her memory.
As the men she had witnessed making their transaction closed in on her, this reviewer couldn’t read it fast enough.


I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Clear Confusion, Kathy M. Howard
Profile Image for Jenn N.
184 reviews
July 23, 2019
I was expecting more of a thriller instead of a romance but that’s not a bad thing. The burgeoning romance relationship between Charlotte and Nicholas is the true heart of this story. It read like a movie you might see on the Hallmark Channel. Charlotte, Nicholas and Nicholas’ sister Nellie are very passionate about their Christian faith and their love for the Lord guides their choices as Charlotte tries to regain her memory. Nellie is actually my favorite character in the story. I hope Ms. Howard considers a follow-up featuring her as I’d love to see what comes next for her. If you love romantic suspense stories that steer away from gore and chaste romance with a huge dash of faith then Clear Confusion by Kathy M. Howard is the book for you!
I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Rosalyn.
943 reviews12 followers
July 22, 2019
I enjoyed this book, written by a new-to-me author.

It wasn't quite the level of suspense that I would have preferred, but still enough danger there that I found it intriguing.

The story line is interesting--a woman witnesses something terrible, and is running for her life. The next thing she knows, she is wondering in the woods and has lost all her memory, with no idea of who she is.

The story is not written with as much detail as it could have been. Things are 'told' more than shown, but it is still a good story.

There's not a high level of suspense or danger, and things happened rather quickly. The mystery was a bit too easy for me to figure out, but in spite of all this, I still enjoyed this read.

Disclaimer: I receive complimentary books from various sources, including, publishers, publicists, authors, and/or NetGalley. I am not required to write a positive review, and have not received any compensation. The opinions shared here are my own entirely. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255
Profile Image for Abigail Harris.
Author 26 books176 followers
July 25, 2019
My Review of Clear Confusion:
Here’s another suspense! This was clearly not your normal suspense. I enjoyed the story and the plot twists surprised me – the book wasn’t too predictable and I enjoyed the romance. My only complaint is that the point out view jumped around. Nicholas was a fantastic character that makes a winning teacher, surprisingly. And his little teaching quirks are so funny. I was slightly confused by the point of view at times and the pacing was slow in the beginning which annoyed me. But I loved the spiritual content, the faith of Sydney was sweet. Through I wondered if it was realistic or not for things to happen as they did in this book.

I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Candy Smith.
422 reviews36 followers
July 27, 2019
This is the first book I've read by the author and I found it an intriguing read. Charlotte is grieving her father's death and decides to travel to find some peace but what she finds is trouble by witnessing a drug deal gone bad. So she's on the run jumping on a bus and ending up in a field in Georgia with no memory of who she is or how she got there but fear of something still plagues her. Nicholas does what he can to help and soon friendship kindles into something more but Charlotte needs to figure out who she can really trust. Through her plight she never loses her faith and connection to God.
I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Mikaela.
47 reviews1 follower
July 26, 2019

Since I have never read a book by Kathy Howard before, I was not sure what to expect. I must say that I was pleased with what I found. Her story provides just the right amount of suspense and intrigue to keep readers engaged and coming back for more. Not only is this a great story, but it is also a story that that continually points readers back to God. I would definitely recommend this, and I cannot wait to see what else Kathy has in store for her readers.

* I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

171 reviews
July 9, 2019
Kathy Howard has written a touching story about a woman, who after the death of her beloved father, boards a bus to get away for awhile. After innocently witnessing a murder, her life is turned upside down, she suffers amnesia, and is forced to go into hiding. Laced with character twists, intrigue, with a dash of romance, this novel will keep you up all night reading! I highly recommend!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through JustRead Tours and was under no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Tiffany.
215 reviews5 followers
July 22, 2019
Beware, this book is one you won't be able to put down. I absolutely loved this book! I loved the characters, and I loved the way Charlotte and Nick depend on God to get them through the rough times in their lives. I found myself wondering who Charlotte could trust? Who was after her? When would she get her memory back? The suspense was great, and the twists kept me guessing. I could not put this book down, and I promise if you're into suspense, this is a book you're going to want to read!

**I received this book for review from Just Read Tours. I was not required to write a positive review, and all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Babymidori13.
33 reviews
August 2, 2019
“Clear Confusion “ is my first book by Kathy M. Howard.
The book was a breathe of fresh air and I really enjoyed it. I appreciate how the author incorporated the daily struggles of those that are seeking God in everyday situations. I give this book a rating of five stars.
I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from JustRead Tours. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Amanda.
127 reviews1 follower
May 31, 2021
Loved this book! So many twists that I didn’t see coming. The relationship between Nicholas and his sister is amazing and I absolutely loved the lengths he went to for her to be happy and loved. This book would be a fantastic show, to be honest.
Profile Image for Randi Sampson.
705 reviews33 followers
July 30, 2019
**I received a complimentary copy for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own.

Waking up in the woods with no memory of how you got there or who you are... that sounds like something straight out of a soap opera, doesn't it? While that may certainly be true, it's also the making of a great mystery! After all, how do you know who to trust...if you don't remember a thing!?

From the very start Clear Confusion kept me guessing and wondering what exactly had happened, and who was responsible. It is just what I look for in a good suspense. Each turn of the page brought new twists, turns and surprises right through the very end. To be honest, about halfway through the book- and around the time that our lead character's memory returned- I thought I had it all figured out. In fact, I thought to myself it was a bit of a disappointment to have the memory returned and the mystery revealed so early on in the story. Boy, was I wrong. Just when I'd thought it was all worked out and solved, more secrets were revealed that I NEVER saw coming. And I absolutely loved it.

As a Christian suspense, I really loved the message throughout about God's goodness, forgiveness and faithfulness. Even if we do not know who we are, He is with us through it all, and that is a message that stands out within these pages very well.

Overall, it was a great read and one that I would certainly recommend- the perfect blend of suspense, drama, romance and inspiration.
Profile Image for Veronica.
981 reviews6 followers
July 28, 2019
3.5 stars
This was a suspenseful story that really grabs your attention from the beginning! I couldn't imagine how terrifying it would be to wake up in the woods not knowing who you were or how you got there. I actually didn't remember what this story was about so I didn't find out for a while what she was doing there or how she got there, which made it even more suspenseful! I admired her strength as she grapples with this and then when she does find out, how she deals with it as the trauma isn't over. Her faith was such a strong part of that and the one thing she knew about herself, that she knew the Lord and loved Him. Both her and Nicholas had a strong faith and I loved how that was a foundation for them. I was glad to see a clear gospel message given and many references to prayer and depending on the Lord. I also admired her grace and forgiveness in dealing with one of the bad guys. Nicholas was such a great guy and had a wonderful attitude about life. There was also a little bit of romance and action. After such a suspenseful start the story did get a little too slow in the middle but I liked it overall. I would recommend this story if you like romantic suspense!

I received this book from JustRead Tours. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for teresa c lee.
1 review
July 6, 2019
Clear your schedule! Once you start reading-you can't stop!

The best yet! A truly believable storyline filled with God's faithfulness every step. Will be waiting for her next endeavor!
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