Fragments of Fear – Carrie Stuart Parks – Thomas Nelson – Published 23 July 2019
Evelyn McTavish’s world came crashing down with the suicide of her fiancé. As she struggles to put her life back together and make a living from her art, she receives a call that her dog is about to be destroyed at the pound. Except she doesn’t own a dog. The shelter is adamant that the microchip embedded in the canine with her name and address makes it hers.
Evelyn recognizes the dog as one owned by archaeologist John Coyote because she was commissioned to draw the two of them. The simple solution is to return the dog to his owner—but she arrives only to discover John’s murdered body.
As Evelyn herself becomes a target, she crosses paths with undercover FBI agent Sawyer Price. The more he gets to know her, the more personally invested he becomes in keeping her safe. Together, they’re desperate to find the links between so many disparate pieces.
And the clock is ticking.
Fragments of Fear is a thrilling and intricately woven suspense novel. With endless twists and loads of action, it is a novel that continued to keep me guessing and marvelling at the unexpected strength of the main character. Fragments of Fear is the first novel I have read by Carrie Stuart Parks and I was impressed with her storytelling and mastery of the suspense details.
Evelyn McTavish, Tavish to her friends, is rocked when her fiancé dies by suicide. A surprise visitor at the graveside service further shakes Tavish’s confidence in herself. Her art isn’t exactly making the waves she thought it would, she hates her accounting job and she still lives under her mother’s roof – even if it’s a guesthouse. When she receives a call saying her name and number was in the microchip of a lost dog, she stumbles into a world of stolen artefacts, drugs, and murder. When the killer’s target is turned her way and the police label her as crazy and don’t believe her story, Tavish sets out to find out what’s really going on.
Tavish is an unlikely heroine. She is not exactly self-confident, has zero experience solving crimes and taking on bad guys, but she never gives up. Even when everyone writes her off, doesn’t believe her or calls her crazy. Even when she has been shot at, blown up and left for dead. Tavish, despite having no detective experience, is pretty good at investigating. I liked that this is a citizen-driven investigation and while she and FBI Agent Sawyer cross paths and work together at some points, they don’t unrealistically team up or are unnecessarily thrown together. Parks leaves the characters, Tavish in particular, to find their own way and answers, which I found refreshing.
There are so many threads in Fragments of Fear. I like a good, thick plot and that is exactly what you get with this story. Along with all the action and life endangerment, there are threads of drug crime, art crime, artefact theft, murder, family drama complications, cons, and mysterious coverups, as well as a touch of romance and discovery of faith. Fragments of Fear is a detailed and well planned suspense novel, which I greatly enjoyed.
The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
Category: Adult fiction
Genre: Christian – Suspense.
Themes: Art, art theft, archaeology, artefacts, FBI, murder, drugs, crime, investigations, romance.
Advisory: References to murder and violence. Drug and alcohol references. Suicide references.
Published: 23 July 2019 by Thomas Nelson
Format: Hardcover, paperback, ebook, audiobook. 336 pages.