Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Secondary Target by Angela Carlisle

Posted May 9, 2024 by meezcarrie in Angela Carlisle, Book Review, Christian, contemporary, giveaway, mystery/suspense, romance / 20 Comments

Secondary Target book review

Secondary Target by Angela CarlisleSECONDARY TARGET by Angela Carlisle
The Secrets of Kincaid #1

GENRE: Romantic Suspense (Christian)
PUBLISHER: Bethany House
RELEASE DATE: May 7, 2024
PAGES: 325

A ruthless murderer. A deadly secret. An unbreakable love.

After the brutal murder of her mother and brother twelve years ago, Corina Roberts built a new life in Kentucky. But when strange things begin to happen, she is thrust into a perilous game of life and death. With nowhere else to turn, her best hope of survival depends on her ex-boyfriend, army veteran Bryce Jessup.

Recently returned from service, Bryce has every intention of staying away from Corina, but when threats close in around her, he isn’t willing to leave her safety to chance. As their search for answers uncovers lethal secrets her detective father kept hidden, Bryce and Corina must untangle the mystery of the merciless killer intent on terrorizing and eliminating Corina’s family before it’s too late.

Buckle up, dear readers – and take a few deep breaths before you start reading this book – because you may forget to supply yourself with oxygen from the very first line onward. I mean… a book that begins with “Security alarms shattered the autumn morning’s tranquility” has me on high alert right away and there wasn’t a lot of time to relax in the plot’s entirety. Which I love in a romantic suspense novel. I want to be glued to the page, biting my nails, holding my breath, and fully immersed in the race for survival/search for clues all the way to the story’s end – and Secondary Target by Angela Carlisle delivered exactly that!

Corina is very likable and it’s easy for readers to sympathize with not only her current plight but also her tragic past and how her subsequent grief has fractured her faith and her hope for a happily-ever-after. She wrestles with questions that most of us have when faced with shocking loss, and her faith journey felt honest and realistic without being trite or forced. Bryce has his own demons to battle, not the least of which is how things ended between him and Corina a few years before. Just because the relationship is broken, however, doesn’t mean the feelings are gone, and I enjoyed watching them reconnect and work through their hurt together. Into the mix, Carlisle adds a great cast of supporting characters – including local law enforcement, Corina’s loyal dog Houston, and bag-toting/free spirit Allye (Bryce’s sister & Corina’s BFF) – and a twisted & riveting suspense plot that had me catching my breath in surprise more than once. Like…. there were a couple of turns that I really did not see coming and I always admire an author that can do that for me.

Secondary Target also marks the third time this week that I’ve been able to re-visit my old Kentucky home on the pages of fiction (the other two were A Run at Love and The Song of Sourwood Mountain) and while this one wasn’t super atmospheric as far as the setting (because, you know, they’re doing the minor thing of RUNNING FOR THEIR LIVES haha) I still loved being back in the Bluegrass state again. There’s something inherently peaceful about Kentucky, and I love when I get to read suspense novels set here because it’s such a great contrast to its natural mood & enhances the drama for me.

Bottom Line: Angela Carlisle bursts onto the romantic suspense scene with Secondary Target, a compelling debut novel that also quite nicely kicks off a brand new series. And I’m already eager for the next book because it involves two of my fave supporting characters from this one. The layered plot hooks you right away and keeps you riveted to the pages as you devour every word, knowing that you can (probably) count on a happily-ever-after resolution but not at all sure what the characters will have to go through to get there. I also appreciated the faith thread and Carlisle’s willingness to let Corina and Bryce share their doubts and raw emotions with readers and with each other. If you’re a fan of Patricia Bradley’s Pearl River series, Lynn H. Blackburn’s Gossamer Falls series, or Laura Scott’s Smoky Mountain Secrets series then you absolutely need to read Secondary Target too!

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 4.5 stars / loved it!

KissingBook Level: 3 / may forget to breathe on occasion

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Angela Carlisle

Angela Carlisle resides in the hills of northern Kentucky and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and The Christian PEN. Angela is an editor by day and prefers to spend her free time reading, baking, and drinking ridiculous quantities of hot tea. Her unpublished works have won awards in ACFW’s Genesis and First Impressions contests and placed in the Daphne du Maurier contest. Her shorter fiction works, including the prize-winning flash-fiction piece “Mansion Murderer,” have appeared in Splickety and Spark magazines. Connect with Angela at her website.

Angela Carlisle interview

Still a couple of days to enter this giveaway!

Secondary Target giveaway

Bethany House is offering a print copy of Secondary Target by Angela Carlisle to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.

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What about you? What makes you want to read Secondary Target by Angela Carlisle?

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20 responses to “Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Secondary Target by Angela Carlisle

  1. Perrianne Askew

    Buckele up and take a few deep breaths, you better believe I’m all about a new romantic suspense! I always love an awesome debut author and it seems as if she’s already won some awards. This sounds like a win, win situation.👍

  2. Kay Garrett

    I absolutely love SECONDARY TARGET by Angela Carlisle! I would highly recommend it too.

  3. Debra Pruss

    I love romantic suspense. The cover is fabulous. Thank you so much for sharing. God bless you.

  4. Vickie

    Just reading the description catched my attention, but when my bestie tells me to read it, I’m doing it!

  5. Betty Curran

    I also love a book that has me so involved I don’t want to put it down till the last page.This sounds like my kind of stor.y

  6. Judi Imperato

    I would love to read this story, it sounds very suspenseful. Thank you for the giveaway.

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