Never Let Go – Elizabeth Goddard – Uncommon Justice #1 – Revell – Published 5 February 2019
As a forensic genealogist, Willow Anderson is following in her late grandfather’s footsteps in her quest for answers about a baby abducted from the hospital more than twenty years ago. The case may be cold, but things are about to heat up when someone makes an attempt on her life to keep her from discovering the truth.
Ex-FBI agent–and Willow’s ex-flame–Austin McKade readily offers his help to protect the woman he never should have let get away. Together they’ll follow where the clues lead them, even if it means Austin must face the past he’s spent much of his life trying to forget. And even if it puts Willow’s tender heart at risk.
Never Let Go is the first book in a new inspirational suspense series by new-to-me author Elizabeth Goddard. While the synopsis for Never Let Go was intriguing and the prologue had me hooked, I sadly lost interest in this story as it progressed. Introspection heavy, the characters spend a lot of time thinking and then rethinking things, making it hard for me to stay focused on the story. While I am sure some readers will love this book with its mix of tension, second-chance love story, and complex mystery, it wasn’t a book that held my attention.
When Willow Anderson’s beloved grandfather dies, she is determined to follow in his footsteps and close his final forensic genealogist case. But the cold case of a baby abducted 20 years ago is set to test Willow, especially when she learns that her grandfather had already enlisted the help of Willow’s ex-fiancé, the man who broke her heart when he walked away. As Willow and Austin work together to solve the mystery of the missing baby, they must also face the pain of their past, all while trying to stay alive when a threat emerges as they draw closer to the truth.
Everything was aligned for me to love this story – a new mystery with a twist of history and genealogy, a love story where two characters reunite and face the problems that threatened their romance previously, and a series of high-tension twists. While the mystery of the abducted baby was certainly intriguing and kept me guessing right to the very end, it was the writing style and characters that ultimately disconnected me from this book. The characters flick backwards and fowards, deeply pondering their problems instead of acting on them. So much time is spent thinking about whether Austin should finally, finally tell Willow the things he kept from her in the past, or thinking about whether Willow should chase this case, or thinking about her feelings, her reactions, his faults, that I wasn’t all that interested when they finally got around to taking action on those thoughts. I do hope that other readers enjoy the detail-heavy descriptions, but I found that it prevented me from enjoying this book.
The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
Genre: Christian suspense.
Themes: Genealogy, missing persons, abduction, baby kidnapping, family, murder, grief, FBI, detective, investigation, romance.
Published: 5 February 2019 by Revell.
Format: Hardcover, paperback, ebook. 368 pages.