Author: Patricia Bradley
Series: Natchez Trace Park Rangers #2
Release Date: February 2, 2021
This one's personal
Natchez Trace Ranger and historian Emma Winters hoped never to see Sam Ryker again after she broke off her engagement to him. But when shots are fired at her at a historical landmark just off the Natchez Trace, she's forced to work alongside Sam as the Natchez Trace law enforcement district ranger in the ensuing investigation.
To complicate matters, Emma has acquired a delusional secret admirer who is determined to have her as his own. Sam is merely an obstruction, one which must be removed. Sam knows that he has failed Emma in the past, and he doesn't intend to let her down again. Especially now that her life is on the line.
Reviewer: Rebecca Maney
"Life is short. Enjoy each day."
What a strange message, especially after Natchez Trace Ranger Emma Winters had survived a harrowing life and death experience the prior evening. There was no signature on the card that accompanied an early morning gerbera daisy delivery to Emma's front door. Why had someone fired shots at her on public property, and why did the flowers now seem like a creepy message, or even worse, a warning? On the other hand, why did having Samuel Ryker back in her life feel much better than it should?
Being a former almost-husband wasn't an advantage when it came to handling Emma Winters. Beautiful but feisty and fiercely independent, Samuel Ryker knew to keep his distance. But when Emma hurled herself into his arms, what was a man to do? Anyone would be shaken up after running for their life, but Samuel had a gut feeling that Emma's safety going forward was going to be more complicated than a few forensic tests could prove. Someone didn't want her restoring historic gravesites at the Trace, and that same someone (or could there be more than one?) must be stalking her every move. In either scenario, someone has a deadly obsession with Emma Winters.
In terms of "who done it?" this story scores a big win. Its multiple dead ends and false leads will find readers scratching their heads, only to be delighted over the fact that Emma and Samuel manage to strike a friendly rhythm . . . . . before it all comes crashing down again. Admittedly, Emma is "better at breaking off a relationship," so it's going to be up to Samuel to clean out some of his own emotional cobwebs . . . Emma's life may very well depend on it.
I received a copy of this book from Baker Publishing Group/Revell through Interviews & Reviews. The opinions stated above are entirely my own.
Reviewer: Debbie Smith
Obsession is the second book in Patricia Bradley’s Natchez Trace Park Rangers series. You’ll find it filled with a good mystery, romance, and even the element of forgiveness.
Ranger and historian Emma Winters’ project, is to survey the slave cemetery and document the accurate number of graves. Sounds simple enough, but someone is sneaking into the area and using the rangers’ equipment to dig near the gravesite. Also, Emma is quickly seeming to become the target of gunfire. Are the two things related?
Her former fiancé, Ranger Sam Ryker, shows up to help keep her safe and solve the mystery of what is happening. We’re off to a great start with two mysteries and a possible reuniting of Sam and Emma.
What Concerned Me
While I seem to be in the minority, I had some trouble feeling invested in this story until midway into it. Also, the two main characters felt too much like only names. Sam was very caring and protective and Emma probably not too warm and fuzzy much of the time. She is more independent and even hard-shelled. There wasn’t enough to make me really care about either of them, though romance is always a nice addition.
What I Liked
Patricia Bradley can tell a good story. The plot was well thought out. And the last half of each book had me flipping the pages. I also like that it’s not necessary to read this series in order. As always, it usually pays to start with the first book, but this story can easily be read as a standalone.
Revell Publishing provided a complimentary copy of this book through Interviews & Reviews. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: June McCrary Jacobs
A skillfully-written thrill ride set on the Natchez Trace in Mississippi.
I was fortunate to read Book 1 in this series, Standoff, earlier this year. Once again, I am impressed with the author's skills in revealing clues in her own good time to keep the tension level high for readers. There were several characters introduced throughout the story, and Ms. Bradley does a fine job of creating in-depth and varied personalities and quirks to keep the reader interested in the plot of the story.
The setting of this story, Natchez Trace in Mississippi, is an essential part of this book. The historical site of Mount Locust with its cabins and cemetery for enslaved people added a unique and intriguing perspective to this story to me since I have been a history buff since I was a middle-grader. Details of the area were well-researched and were discussed throughout the story.
The author has developed a wide assortment of villains and good guys to tell her story. She does an excellent job of keeping readers guessing which person fits into which group until the last few chapters. I personally experienced a variety of emotions while reading this book – dread, grief, fear, happiness, and stress.
Emma Winters, the female lead, is a strong-willed, intelligent, determined—yet flawed—individual who blames herself for many of the events which have led her to this place. The male lead, whom I will leave unnamed for those who have not yet read the story, experiences some heartbreaking traumas during the book. Resolution of these tragedies leads him to a stronger faith in God's path for his life.
The faith threads of forgiveness, releasing past traumas, trust, and moving on past tragedy to a brighter future are woven throughout the plot making this an excellent novel in my view. The book's final chapter provides a welcomed surprise about one of the issues discussed in the story.
I look forward to reading Ms. Bradley's next installment in this awesome series.
Highly recommended to fans of Christian/clean romantic suspense fiction, Christian/clean romance fiction, and Christian/clean Southern fiction.
I received a paperback copy of this book from Baker Publishing through Interviews & Reviews.
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