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Lethal Legacy

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The Advocate

Lethal Legacy by Irene Hannon

Reviewed by Dale Lewis

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"Hannon’s smooth transitions, endearing characters and taut suspense are indicative of all her storylines."

With a storyline of bitterly held grudges, family connections and late-blossoming romance, prolific fiction author Irene Hannon finishes out her Guardians of Justice series with Lethal Legacy.

In the police report, her father’s sudden death is ruled a suicide. Case closed. Kelly Warren, his only daughter, has always believed it was murder but her pleas fall on deaf ears. When she receives an order for tulips as a gift from her father, she’s convinced she now holds the evidence needed to reopen the case.

The detective assigned to the former investigation is on vacation. Detective Cole Taylor is asked to step in and make a decision to reopen. He doesn’t see anything that suggests a murder until Kelly ends up in the ER with a life-threatening crisis. As he begins to look over the case notes in search of a possible motive, Cole discovers a dark secret from Kelly's past: a secret even Kelly may not know. Dangerous becomes the reality for both Kelly and Cole as the investigation deepens and the pieces of the puzzle are placed side-by-side.

The earlier-than-expected revelation of the perpetrator could have backfired in this story, but I believe it solidifies the intensity of the cat-and-mouse game between the parties involved. Romantic feelings between Cole and Kelly appear too early for me – they meet, she walks away and he’s whipped in a five-minute encounter. At times, romance outweighs the suspense.

Kelly's faith is profoundly reflected in the storyline as she struggles with her father’s murder and her growing attraction to a certain captivating detective. The redemption element is solid as Cole deals with the emptiness in his life. All police procedures and terminology are penned with precise detail.

The action slowed down at times, to the point of disengaging my interest. Yet the pace never crawled to a funeral dirge. With the introduction of key evidence and critical circumstances, Hannon stirs the reader’s emotions to reengage. Hannon’s smooth transitions, endearing characters and taut suspense are indicative of all her storylines. Each of her narratives can be read as a stand-alone novel.
Although I was disappointed in the predictable conclusion of Lethal Legacy, I was again fascinated with her realistic storytelling and the empathy she creates with her cast of imperfect characters. I look forward to reading her upcoming series “Private Justice.”

Dale Lewis now mans the front desk at the EFCA (The Evangelical Free Church of America) National Office in Minneapolis, MN. He was the graphic designer/pre-press production artist for over twelve years before being asked to step into this new role. Prior to that, he was the publications manager at his alma mater, Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN in the public relations office as well as the adviser to the college’s yearbook. He's a director/actor/writer for the Hope Church (Oakdale, MN) adult drama worship team and was the senior editor of the church newsletter. He's also written two collections of poetry, “Whispers of Assurance” and “On Life: Constant Communion Without Ceasing” as well as a devotional entitled “Eternal Education.” He and his family live in Oakdale, Minnesota.