Author: Patricia Bradley
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Natchez Trace Park Rangers #1
Release Date: May 5, 2020
The Natchez Trace National Parkway stretches 444 miles from Nashville to Natchez, the oldest town on the Mississippi River. It's the perfect road for a relaxed pleasure drive. Unfortunately for Luke Fereday, it's also perfect for moving drugs.
Sent to Natchez to infiltrate the organization at the center of the drug ring, Luke arrives too late to a stakeout and discovers the body of his friend, park ranger John Danvers. John's daughter Brooke is determined to investigate her father's murder but soon finds herself the target of a killer who will do anything to silence her.
Luke will have his hands full keeping her safe. But who's going to keep him safe when he realizes he's falling--hard--for the daughter of the man he failed to save?
Reviewer: Abigail Harris
Patricia Bradley is a spectacular suspense author.
I've enjoyed one other of Bradley's books that I know of, I may have read more and no longer remember, though I don't believe so.
"Standoff" definitely has a standoff in the guessing game of who is the bad guy.
This was not the darkest suspense, which I enjoyed, it was somewhat lighter, as a matter of fact, and I liked it. And there was also more sadness than other suspense that broke my heart.
I loved how Luke and Brooke were old friends that hadn't really dated before even though they were close, I just wish we could have seen them with John.
The undercover side of the story was intriguing … Very much so, and it was interesting to find out more about park rangers since I don't know much about them.
There is content that--mentions of rape--which makes the book better for 16/18 up.
This book was provided courtesy of Baker Publishing (Revell), through Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Jill Jones
Patricia Bradley’s newest series, Natchez Trace Park Rangers, promises romance, suspense and excitement. In the first installment, “Standoff”, Bradley introduces readers to Brooke Danvers and Luke Fereday. Danvers recently finished her training as a park ranger and Fereday is working undercover. When Danvers’ father’s suspicious death is ruled a suicide, she needs Fereday’s help to prove that he was murdered. When their cases collide, secrets are threatened to be revealed and danger follows them everywhere. Even trusted friends and colleagues are suspects.
From the first chapter to the last, suspense lovers will be in heaven. I’m looking forward to hearing more about the Natchez Trace Park Rangers and the trouble they find themselves in.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, through Interviews and Reviews, as part of its Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Reviewer: Lori Parrish
My first ever Bradley book and I very much enjoyed this book! I really wish that I could give it more than 5 stars. Her style of writing is astounding! I'm a fan for life.
A lot of action with twists and turns that will keep your interest throughout the book. The plot was awesome! I was holding my breath as each layer kept coming uncovered in this novel. I loved the tension, anxiety, fear all of those things wrapped up into one. The perfect ingredients for a wonderful story. The author does a good job of keeping you guessing until the end of the person who did the dirty deed, so to speak.
This is a clean read with Jesus mentioned as the Truth, way, and the life throughout the book. It's not preachy, not by any means. I thought she did really well in this regard.
My heart went out to Brooke when everything that was happening in Natchez Trace hit close to home. I know it isn't easy to lose someone very close to you. No one deserves that.
I liked this story too because it offers second chances. I think everyone needs a second chance, don't you? The Lord certainly does. I really enjoyed my travels down south even though it was so hot I thought I was going to suffocate. No, really, it's just my imagination running wild. I've never been to this place, so I thank the author that I can travel without leaving the comfort of my home. Although I'd love to visit someday.
There are some subjects (marijuana) that might offend some readers, but overall I thought the whole story was nicely done. I highly recommend this story! Especially for Christian Suspense readers.
I received this book courtesy of Baker Publishing Group/Revell through Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Martha Robinson
For those of us under mandatory “stay-at-home” orders, armchair travel may be our only way to go. May I recommend Standoff (Natchez Trace Park Ranger #1), by Patricia Bradley, for your next travel adventure?
The Natchez Trace Parkway, the setting for Standoff, 400 plus miles of roads along the ancient Trace, through beautiful forests. However, someone is bringing illegal drugs up the Trace into Tennessee. This is such a relevant topic for today, as well as the legalization of medical marijuana.
I really enjoyed the characters in Standoff, especially Brooke Danvers. She is already a park ranger, but wants to serve with her father, John Danvers, as a law enforcement ranger. However, before she can be sworn in, her father dies, supposedly by his own hand. Brooke and her family must cope with the suicide ruling.
I also liked Luke Fereday, despite his bad boy image. He says he is a bartender, and we know he is buying and selling drugs, but whenever anything happens to Brooke, he is always nearby. So who is he really? Who can he trust?
The plot thickens with another death and an explosion. The tension builds. This is definitely a page-turner! However, perhaps because I was reading so fast, or because of the number of characters, I did become confused at times and had to stop and reread.
Although Brooke goes to church, Luke’s grandmother Daisy is the only character who expresses faith in God.
Overall, Standoff is romantic suspense at its best. In my opinion, you will never go wrong when you select a book by Patricia Bradley. I am looking forward to reading the next books in this series. Maybe one day, I will be able to drive along the Natchez Trace Parkway myself.
This book was provided courtesy of Baker Publisher Group/Revell, through Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Gee Dixon
This was an awesome story. It will keep you at the edge of your seat. Luke works undercover to catch a drug cartel going on. Brooke, his high school girlfriend, is fighting the thoughts of the pain that Luke put her through when he left town after high school.
Brooke's father was killed, and it was ruled a suicide, but Brooke says he was murdered. So Luke goes to help to prove it was not a suicide. Brooke and Luke become close through all this.
Definitely, a great read. Anxious for book two.
I received this book courtesy of Baker Publishing Group through Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Mindy Houng
Patricia Bradley starts her newest series Natchez Trace Park Rangers with a bang in this book. The plot is complex with many twists and turns and the author will have you guessing at the unnamed villain until the very end of the book. The suspense and mystery components are top-notch though the secondary characters are sometimes difficult to separate out because there are many (but I'm guessing that was on purpose so that the villain is not as obvious). I know nothing about the National Park Service or the Rangers who work within the system so it was fascinating to learn about this world.
The romance component fell a little flat for me. Brooke, in her independence, fear, and bravery, and Luke, in his protective tender ways, are both likable but I did not feel drawn into their heartaches and longings. How Brooke handled two men's attention and affection had me confused for the most part and how it all resolved felt rushed and unexplained.
If you enjoy a good suspense with a complex mystery, you will absolutely enjoy this book.
I received a copy of the book from Baker Publishing Group via Interviews & Reviews and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.
Reviewer: Trixi Oberembt
Brooke Danvers father's death was ruled a suicide. As an almost newly minted Park ranger investigative officer, she's out to prove otherwise. Little does she know she'll find more than she bargained for!
Luke Fereday is sent undercover to nail drug runners up the Natchez Trace in Mississippi when he finds John Danvers murdered. Too late to stop it, he'll work with Brooke to find the culprit and stop the drug ring.
This is the first suspense I've read from Patricia Bradley, but it won't be my last! One of the things I enjoy most in stories like this is the police procedures, and Bradley included plenty of that. Trying to figure out who was behind everything was next to impossible, I had a few suspicions but was still shocked at the end. Armchair sleuthing at it's best! Also, both Brooke & Luke have a past history, and watching the romance develop between them was fun. There are many twists and turns to keep me on my toes, lots of layers to unravel, and the story drew me in from the beginning. What I also loved, the tension was kept at a high level to keep me turning pages to find out what happens next.
This is romantic suspense at it's best that will keep me coming back for more! I can't wait for the next story in the Natchez Trace Park Rangers series.
This book was provided courtesy of Baker Publishing (Revell), through Interviews & Reviews, for my honest review.
Reviewer: Marie Edwards
Thank you in advance to the publisher, Revell Books for providing a complimentary UNCORRECTED advanced review copy through Interviews and Reviews. A positive review was not required. All words are my own. Patricia Bradley is a new-to-me author, although she has numerous novels to her name.
This is part of a series, but being that it is the first one, it is a standalone read. The teaser for the second one? That seems exciting as well. And, given how this one ends, it might be worth adding the second novel to the TBR (to be read) list as soon as the title is released. No word yet on how many books are in this series, or I have not been able to find that information.
The suspense premise drew me to the novel right off. As I LOVE good suspense reads (Love Inspired, Harlequin Intrigue), particularly the cleaner ones, this was at the top of my “REALLY GOTTA HAVE IT” list. Clean, suspense reads with law enforcement? Always a perfect read for me. But, this book featured a different type of law enforcement agency – park rangers.
These are NOT the “Jellystone”, bear-chasing type of rangers. Nor are they the “hey no campers allowed here; keep to the trail” type. These are the law enforcement, undercover ones. That really put this as a “gotta have it” type of read. And, that cover? Haunting, mysterious, almost ominous.
I’m sure it’s obvious – I REALLY ENJOYED this book! There were places I felt could’ve been expanded though. There was one scene that was only touched on that I felt it could’ve been expanded as it was left open. This was around chapter 70. Although I had a feeling what the findings would be, it would’ve been nice to see some conclusion or verification with it. This isn’t the only “hole” left open.
From the beginning this book was gripping, definitely an “edge-of-seat”, intense read. I could barely keep up with it. There were times I actually caught myself trying to breathe. The short, quick chapters made this a fast-paced read. I really didn’t want to put it down.
The element of danger lurked EVERYWHERE. And, it was hard to know who to trust. I certainly knew that Brooke and Luke could be trusted. There were some I had minor trust in, and there were a few characters (one in particular) I didn’t trust at all. Just right off, something threw me about the character. And, I can’t believe how right I was. I just had a nagging suspicion about the person.
I simply adored Daisy (Luke’s grandmother). She was the grandmother I would’ve loved growing up. She provided a calm; soothing balance to the whole chaos going on. Luke was an interesting character. He easily and believably fit the undercover role.
Brooke was a good character; though there were times I thought she was a bit immature. There is a stunning surprise about her parentage that ends up connecting to one of the plots in this story. That was something I had a feeling about as well – so there were two plots that were predictable, at least for me. But, I did enjoy seeing at how they were woven together.
There was one character whose status was never fully “concluded”. Even at the end, there was a slight opening for the author to update, yet it wasn’t taken. I am hoping that the second book lets the readers know right away whether or not the character survived. As I am only going by an ARC, this could change. So, keep that in mind with regard to the two issues I pointed out.
Overall the book was engaging right up until the very end. The last three chapters were a whirlwind, whiplash trip. It did end a bit too quick for me, so I am eagerly awaiting the second novel – although it looks like the focus will be on another one of the female characters, I do hope the author wraps up Brooke and Luke’s story.
While distributed through Revell, which deals primarily in Christian fiction, there are minor references to God, Jesus, and his plans for our lives in this book. It is not a central theme or focus and used in context with Brooke seeing advice, and most of it coming from Daisy. There are no bible quotes, passages, or sermons. Church-going is only mentioned. While not a minor issue for me, it can be for some readers who expect that there will be more content. Other readers might enjoy the lighter faith tones.
This is also a “clean” read – there are no sex scenes, inferred sex scenes, or foul language. People who enjoy light Christian references and clean suspense reads should enjoy this.
Reviewer: Linda Klager
The cover of the book shows Brooke Danvers looking apprehensively. The setting is Natchez, Mississippi.
Brooke is looking forward to being sworn in by her Father to become a law enforcing ranger. Her parents really did not want Brooke to be in this type of dangerous job.
An old flame of Brooke's showed up - his name is Luke Fereday. Brooke is seeing Jeremy Steele now. This new relationship causes romantic tension in the story line.
Brooke and Luke try to find out who murdered Brooke's Father. There was also another Father trying to find out why his son was murdered. Brooke and Luke knew this family and were trying to solve these two mysteries.
There was a lot of action, danger, and an unexpected family situation revealed that caused a certain person to doubt. Who was the murderer? Why did this person murder? What was the reason behind this person's actions?
This book was provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group (Revell) through Interviews & Reviews, for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Rebecca Maney
"What had he gotten himself into?"
Just about every character in this book could ask themself the same question. . . what?. . and why?
When questionable deaths keep popping up in Natchez, Mississippi, park ranger Brooke Danvers is overwhelmed with evidence that doesn't make any sense. One of those deaths happened to be her father, and she is adamant that he did not take his own life as the crime scene seemed to suggest. And what about Luke Fereday? He keeps turning up every time she needs moral, or in one case, physical support. Why is he back in Natchez? Why is he sticking so close? And why do the things he tells her about himself, not match up with the Luke that she knew, and cared a lot about, once upon a time? The sight of that man can still turn her head and give her a heart a swirl.
As Luke and Brooke cautiously fall back into a camaraderie of sorts, there's so much they don't know, and it can hurt them. A drug cartel is operating with reckless abandon up and down the Natchez Trace, and eventually, the two of them will knowingly, or in Brooke's case unknowingly, find themselves in the epicenter.
At times, the plotting in this book seemed a bit forced and thus rushed. The main characters were wonderful, but the secondary characters were often confusing to identify, adding to the mystique, but also adding to the reader's uncertainty as to how to integrate them fully into the story. First books in series have a lot to accomplish, and "Standoff" accomplished a lot!
I received this book from Baker Publishing through Interviews and Reviews. The opinions stated above are entirely my own.
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