Book Review: Dark Deception

4 Jan

Kate O’Brien’s quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she’s been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn’t the murderer, she’s subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis.


Nancy Mehl lives in Missouri, with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She’s authored thirty books and is currently at work on a new FBI suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.

All of Nancy’s novels have an added touch – something for your spirit as well as your soul. “I welcome the opportunity to share my faith through my writing,” Nancy says. “It’s a part of me and of everything I think or do. God is number one in my life. I wouldn’t be writing at all if I didn’t believe that this is what He’s called me to do. I hope everyone who reads my books will walk away with the most important message I can give them: God is good, and He loves you more than you can imagine. He has a good plan especially for your life, and there is nothing you can’t overcome with His help.”

You can find out more about Nancy by visiting her Web site at: She also is active on the Suspense Sisters: and on FaceBook!


My Impressions:

Nancy Mehl is a favorite of mine. She always delivers heart-pounding suspense paired with sweet romance. In Dark Deception, the second book in her Defenders of Justice series, Mehl has upped the ante. This novel is one of the more twisting, turning books I have read in a long time. If you like non-stop action, this one is for you. Recommended!

As the only survivor of a serial killer, Kate O’Brien is in witness protection. Still reeling from her ordeal, new DNA evidence has cleared her sister’s murderer. Deputy US Marshall Tony DeLuca was Kate’s protector during the trial and now, six years later, he vows to protect her again. But danger awaits the pair as they struggle to survive.

The action starts at page one and continues for one long breath-holding read. Chilling and creepy are apt words to describe the crimes and the killer. But Dark Deception never lapses into graphic detail. Mehl does a great job of engaging the imagination of the reader without lurid details. I for one was glad of that. There was enough to keep the pages turning without causing nightmares when I finally put it down. 😉 Main characters Kate and Tony have good chemistry, but the romance never seemed rushed or unbelievable. Secondary characters kept this reader guessing — just what are their motives? There are a number of seemingly random threads that the author ties together to provide some good aha moments. I especially liked the secondary plot involving a policeman named Leon. I won’t spoil anything, but that storyline really added depth to the novel. While the bad guys truly are bad, the good guys are on varying faith journeys — very realistic.

Dark Deception is book 2 in a series, but is easily read as a standalone. I have not read book 1, Fatal Frost, but need to get on that ASAP. Especially since book 3, Blind Betrayal, will be released in April 2018!


Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE.

(Thanks to Bethany House for a providing a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

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