Today is your opportunity to win either an ebook or soft cover of Miranda Warning. Your choice! Leave a comment through Sunday and make sure I have an email address. Random selection will determine a winner to be announced on June 23rd.
Miranda Warning by Heather Day Gilbert is the first in the A Murder in the Mountains Series.
Miranda Warning begins with a stunning paragraph penned in first person much like a journal or diary entry. The entries continue throughout the story from past to present and reveal a character who is deeply troubled.
Miranda is the 69 year old best friend of a young-married woman named Tess Spencer. Tess and her up-and-coming lawyer husband Thomas are still paying off student loans, live in Thomas' parents' small cottage across the driveway from their house, and have just discovered Tess is pregnant. After two years of marriage and so many financial difficulties, Tess can't imagine being ready for a baby but is simultaneously excited and nervous.
Tess's ties to Miranda go back to when Tess was a young teen whose dad was long gone and whose mother was in and out of trouble with the law over drugs. Miranda rescued the young Tess, showed her love and commitment, introduced her to God, and became her best friend. Miranda, now a widow, has suffered both a heart attack and a stroke which has left her in a wheel chair where she resides in the plush assisted living "resort" called The Haven. Still sharp in her insights and resolute in her faith, Miranda receives a threatening letter from what appears to be a long-dead friend.
Enter Tess to the rescue. To return the unsoliticed favor to Miranda, Tess is compelled to investigate this haunting warning to her friend. In the process of her desire to help, Tess receives some personal warnings, gets followed, has ghostly stalkers appear on her in-law's property, receives flowers with hidden meanings delivered by an old college acquaintance, and manages to rile up her husband and family who want to protect her.
Progressing from the typical young wife, who only knows what guys are like in her perceived notions of them, to the increasingly hormonal pregnant woman, Tess is sometimes a super sleuth, sometimes an over-protective jealous child, and sometimes just a carelessly obsessed friend on the hunt for whoever is threatening her friend and her. She's usually armed with her knife because she can't carry the Glock without a permit, but this doesn't always reassure her or her husband that she's safe as the threatening incidents increase.
There are many more details and characters in this well-written story of betrayal, resentment, revenge, friendship, forgiveness, loyalty, and love, but I'll let readers investigate along with Tess's first person account of her adventurous pursuits in solving the mystery of the Miranda Warning.
Heather Day Gilbert has written an enticing tale to begin her series, endearing us to many of the characters, creating a credible mystery with snapshots of truly humorous quips of internal dialogue, behaviors, and circumstances. A good first novel in A Murder in the Mountains Series.
Father, please continue to keep Heather in your care, diagramming her writing journey, filling her with stories you have just for her to tell. Watch over her and keep her safe from all harm. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.