When I saw that Lynn H. Blackburn had a new book out, Unknown Threat (Defend and Protect, Book 1), I wanted to read it because I had enjoyed her earlier novel Beneath the Surface.
Unknown Threat’s plotline sounded intriguing. US Secret Service Special Agents Luke Powell and Zack Thacker went out for an early morning run and when they return to their vehicles suddenly, they are under fire. As they are lying on the ground looking at their vehicles, they realize that their cars are wired with bombs. Will they survive until help comes? Who in the world is trying to kill them and for what reason? FBI Special Agent Faith Malone has been assigned to investigate these attacks and try and protect the remaining US Secret Service team in Raleigh.
This fast-paced story drew me in from the beginning. Interesting to think about how people who risk their lives to protect others might respond when they are targeted? I liked the character Luke Powell and the US Secret Service team, their friendships, and their commitment to one another.
I didn’t quite connect with Faith Malone, she seemed more like a caricature of a tough single woman who sacrificed her personal life for career advancement. The repeated Cherry Coke references kind of got old. It was understandable why Faith might be attracted to Luke who was a decent nice guy, but I didn’t understand what he saw in her.
Faith’s sister Hope was a very likable and refreshing character. I would like to see her in future books of the Defend and Protect series. It was hard to understand how the character Special Agent Janice Estes kept her job. Was she incompetent or just plain corrupt? She wasn’t very believable.
While I liked many of the characters, I struggled a bit with the plotline. It was very convoluted and I don’t see how a reader would have been able to figure out the mystery. The story ended rather abruptly and if it hadn’t been for the last chapter summarizing whodunnit and why I don’t think I would have put the pieces together. Not sure that the motives of the bad guys were believable.
There wasn’t much about the Christian faith included in the storyline. But I did appreciate that there was no profanity or sexual immorality.
The good: likable characters and an interesting scenario. Not so good: the convoluted plot and ending and one of the main characters wasn’t very likable.
Would I recommend Unknown Threat by Lynn H. Blackburn? If you like Lynn’s books give this book a read. This is the first book in the Defend and Protect series and some of the characters will be carried over to future books.
I would like to thank Revell Publishers and NetGalley for the opportunity to read a complimentary copy of Unknown Threat by Lynn H. Blackburn. I was under no obligation to give a favorable review.