The fourth book of the Alaskan Courage series, Silenced by Dani Pettrey, is a suspenseful, romantic, Christian book that combines the beauty of Alaska, love, and faith with a murder mystery investigation, making for a book like nothing I've ever read before.
Kayden, an avid rock climbing adventurer, discovers a body while out on a tough mountain pass. Jake, a former detective, comes out of early retirement to work the case for what they realize was actually a murder. Overcoming a history of distrust, Kayden and Jake work the case together, and as they do, they realize there's something brewing between them.
The first half of the book involves a lot of running back and forth between different suspects and witnesses, garnering what seemed like one fact from each person, only to return the next day for another single question to be answered. Though perhaps true to how a detective works, it was repetitive and slow paced to move between about four different people, each "questioned" upwards of three separate times.
The second half was a whole different story, literally. By the time I finished reading, I couldn't remember what happened in the first half, since the first story line completely stopped and was never mentioned again. That being said, the story really picks up in the second half and moves quickly - impossible to set down. In the midst of a suspenseful and sickening kidnapping, family bands together to show the impossible strength of love and faith.
Silenced did a beautiful job of describing the scenery and explaining Alaskan life. It got cheesy at times, due to the romantic side of the book, but the adventure/investigation side was all business. Though it was hard for me to stay interested during the bouncing between interviews part of the investigation, the rest of the novel made up for its shortcomings with exciting detective work and chases through the woods.
This book has it all: adventure, love, faith, murder, investigations, kidnapping, heartbreak, Alaskan wilderness, and family values.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Bethany House for this review. The opinion in this review is unbiased and reflects my honest judgment of the product.