Publisher and Publication Date: May 2, 2017. Bethany House Publishers.
Genre: Christian fiction, mystery, detective.
Dee Henderson’s website
The first Evie Blackwell Cold Case book is Traces of Guilt.
Evie Blackwell is a cold case investigator with the Illinois State Police. She recently began working in the Missing Persons Task Force. She has a new partner, David Marshal. David’s girlfriend is Maggie, a popular singer in a band known as Triple M. David is a Christian and hopes to marry Maggie. Maggie is not a Christian, and because of this David is holding off on marriage. Evie has a boyfriend named Rob. They too are contemplating marriage. David and Evie are working on a case involving the disappearance of Jenna Greenhill. When David and Evie interview people who knew Jenna, they get strong reactions of intense like or dislike.
I don’t read Christian fiction often. Most Christian fiction books I find are unrealistic. In order to maintain a clean content, the stories are void of the realness of life. The topics in the books are real, but things are stripped or omitted that give the reader a believability to the story. The characters seem pasty and inhuman. Some Christian publishers and authors are able to pull off a believable story, and some authors miss the mark.
An interesting element in Threads of Suspicion is a Christian engaged to an unbeliever. David Marshall wants to marry Maggie. Maggie is not a Christian, and David makes the decision to post-pone marriage for a while. They are still in a relationship, but he will not marry a person who is not a Christian. David shows patience and tender love for Maggie. His feelings for her did not change, but he was not going to progress to marriage unless she became a Christian. To an outsider, a person who is not a Christian, this attitude and action of David seems cruel. The topic of religion in marriage is huge. Eventually there is going to be a showdown between a married couple about religion. I feel this topic is an interesting add to the overall story. The characters, David and Maggie, are loving and gracious to one another. This shows Christian teachings of love and grace. Another Christian teaching: “Don’t become partners with those who do not believe. For what partnership is there between righteousness and lawlessness? Or what fellowship does light have with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14, CSB. On one hand, I am glad David and Maggie acted loving to one another. However, I wanted to see turmoil. I needed to see intense friction.
I enjoyed reading the interesting and insightful conversations between Evie and David. David is a smart guy. He is both intelligent and wise. Several things he said in the story stood out to me. For example, “Life is mostly captured in the decisions we make, the choices, the pivots.”
The details of gathering and studying information to solve the case is shown to be a slow and steady progression. Patience is required to be a detective. A good eye for detail is important. These things were brought through in the story and created a solid piece for this detective mystery story.
Overall, Threads of Suspicion is an enjoyable read.