Friday, January 3, 2014

Unspoken - Dee Henderson

Genre:  Christian Romance
Publisher:  Bethany House
Publication Date:  October 1, 2013
Rating:  4 Out of 5  Very Good

PROS:  Action packed, edge-of-your-seat adventure; updates on characters from previous novels

CONS:  Slow character development

Kidnapped years ago, Charlotte Graham has tried to stay out of the spotlight.  Her kidnapper is still at large, and with such a high profile case, the longer she stays hidden, the better.  She has changed her name, her appearance, and has little contact with her family.

Bryce Bishop's business is doing well...really well.  But a competing store opening up right next to him?  Not going to happen.  Little does he know there is more to store owner Charlotte Graham than meets the eye.  From the start of their business transactions, Bryce becomes more and more intrigued by this pretty lady.  With a powerful family, and friend connections, can Bryce and the FBI protect Charlotte and all she holds dear?

Dee Henderson has been a best selling author for years, although there was a hiatus in her writing for a while.  While known for her fast paced storylines, Unspoken started out a bit slow for me, hence the  rating of 4.  In the beginning the storyline line seemed disconnected, ho-hum, and altogether a tad boring...which was a big disappointment for this reviewer!  Rarely have I found myself skimming the pages of such well known authors, waiting for the book to draw me in.  Thankfully, somewhere along the line, it started to pick up steam.

While it may be more apparent to other readers than it was to me, I finally made the connection with some of the characters realizing they had been in her previous book, Full Disclosure.  As with real-life, I then started paying more attention to the plot/setting/etc., wanting to find out what was happening with my “old friends”.  It was then that I became hooked on the storyline, and began to, yet again, appreciate this writer.

Henderson's character development is, in my opinion, the weakest part to this book.  While this is slated as a stand-alone novel, the connections to Full Disclosure could have been a little more apparent.  Background character development is often key to drawing the reader in.  With that said, the setting/scene descriptions were excellent, I could easily picture where the characters were; the beautiful storefront trying to move in next door, or the relaxing and tranquil estate by the lake where they spent their down time.

Details regarding the kidnapping seemed very realistic, as did Charlotte's feelings and emotions so many years after the fact.  I can only imagine what someone would go through in those situations, and yet Henderson seemed to nail those parts of the book!

My recommendation?  If you can stick it out through the first ¼ of the book, you will soon find you are on the ride of a lifetime...and isn't that what being a Dee Henderson fan is all about?

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