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Title: Trail of Secrets
By: Nora LeDuc
Blurb: Who killed the vivacious, Emily McGuire and laid out her body at the water tower? Orderly, rule-follower Mia McGuire is the least likely person to answer this question. Mia’s life has taken a downward spiral with her sister Emily’s murder, the breakup with her boyfriend, and losing her editing position. But when the homicide investigation crawls, Mia can’t stand by doing nothing. She hires the problematic Lucas Davis to help her find the truth.
After suffering trauma from a shooting on the job, Lucas Davis resigns from the local force. Once known as a daredevil in his small Florida town, he has become an embarrassment to his dad, the police chief. When Mia offers him investigative work, he quickly accepts the job to prove he still possesses the skills and guts to solve the case. Together, these two unlikely sleuths form an intimate bond and are determined to beat the odds. They set out to bring a terrifying killer to justice before he targets them next.
EXCERPTS: “Mia?” A deep male voice shouted to her.
She turned to the sound of the voice. Lucas Davis was striding to her. He was here too? The tall, blond-headed man paced to her in a hurried power gait. Mia blinked, trying to adjust to the fact he wasn’t in her imagination.
He stopped a few feet from her. “We meet again. I’d say it’s my lucky day.” His playful tone eased the ache of tension vibrating in her skull. His eyes were warm.
The tightness in her body drained away. She tilted her head. “You don’t have a clone that was at the station earlier, do you?”
“I’m the one and only. It would cause a lot of gossip in Star Pointe if I had a twin.” A hint of mischief curved his mouth slightly upward.
She’d been talking and thinking about him yesterday and today. Now he stood in front of her—a second time. It was like she kept wishing him to appear. Gram’s words floated into her mind. That boy could be the poster child for lack of common sense.
Had “the shooting” changed him? His overgrown hair and cutoff shorts fit the casual look of a perpetual beach boy. He was lean and trim, probably from his training in law enforcement. Although his sturdy six-foot-plus frame reminded her he’d been into lots of sports in school. “Are you here to surf?”
Rating: 5.0 Stars
Review: The McGuire women’s’ life changes forever when Mia takes her dog Zsa Zsa out and Mia sees something by the water tower on their property and dread fills her as she recognizes a body. What shocks and horrifies her is finding out the dead body was her beloved younger sister. The author does a great job of showing the chaos surrounding the scene and how each family member reacts to the news. Her grandmother shuts down and Alana decides to take charge, keeping on the chief of police to find the killer, giving Mia a gun for protection and having a bodyguard driving with her everywhere.
It was enjoyable watching Mia pull herself together and take care of their safety and deciding that it would be better if she investigated the details herself. Especially after the first interview with the Chief, even when she gave him two names of Emily’s recent ex-boyfriends, she got the feeling that he didn’t’ take her seriously. She grew into a strong, opinated woman who learned that being in the background isn’t always the best thing. I enjoyed the interactions between Lucas Davis, the Chief’s son and herself. He takes everything she says and the small clues and hidden witnesses seriously. Mia had always felt safe with him, even when she was young. She has always seen him as a man who could solve problems, for example, when she was young, he would be the one to fix her bike.
It’s obvious he’s a man of action and even though his reputation is in shreds, he takes it upon himself to improve their house security He brought and installed cameras around the house and installed everything and showed Mia how to use it. He would not take any payment, so Mia decided to take him to breakfast.
Their relationship grew even as the case heated up. Lucas could not keep his mind off of her and her safety. She feels incredibly safe around him, wanting to be around him when things become too much. I was suspiciousof Emily’s last boyfriend Chris Green as he acted oddly, he would yell at Mia as he was mad since his name was given to the Chief as a suspect. As he kept coming around, the chief made sure he never came again. Lucas loved how much energy Mia was putting into the case, interviewing but he was framed when Emily’s cell phone case was left in his hotel room. The poor man suffered through a hard interview partly because the police no longer trusted him and it was found out that Emily called him the day she was killed.
Another person that sent shivers down my spine was Alana’s husband as he became combative towards Mia. For example, during the party and cornered her in a room. Things pick up after that since they found out that Emily was poisoned with ketamine, a drug that was used a anesthetize animals. Tit was strange because this was another attempt to frame someone.
The The ending was extremely interesting when we find out who the killer was the author did a great job of hiding who it was, although toward the end with small hints.
I found the plot well done with no places that didn’t make sense. The relationship between everyone was in depth and like life they are messy and tangled. Unlike many mysteries, I had a hard time figuring out which person actually committed the murder until close to the end, with small clues starting to add up. The perpetrator was someone that never crossed their mind.
This is a novel that shows that a family can pull together under horrible circjumentances. It also shows that people can grow and change with each life experience. Love can be found in the strangest places but the support is desperately needed.
Giveaway Information and RaffleCopter Code:
Nora LeDuc will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Nora grew up in rural New England where she currently lives with her family. She enjoys visiting and spending time with her friends, the Winettes, in Florida, where she continues to write. Trail of Secrets is her sixteenth book. Her next story is already in progress.
You can find Nora on Amazon, Goodreads, Facebook and her website: Noraleduc.com. She also contributes to the Romance Gems’ Blog every month