Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. Withers

Posted May 15, 2024 by meezcarrie in Book Review, Christian, contemporary, Ellen E. Withers, giveaway, historical, multi-timeline, mystery/suspense, romance / 24 Comments

Show Me Deceit book review

Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. WithersSHOW ME DECEIT by Ellen E. Withers
Show Me Mysteries #2

GENRE: Dual Timeline Mystery (Christian)
PUBLISHER: Scrivenings Press
RELEASE DATE: May 14, 2024
PAGES: 326

Present Day: Liesl Schrader is once again involved in death investigations. A body is discovered inside a charitable museum where Liesl serves on the board of directors. She and her best friend Nicole are drawn into a police theft investigation stemming from the death at the museum.

When Liesl and Nicole uncover a set of historic bones, questions arise. Are they related to the Civil War-era encampment in their town? The unit, commanded by General Pope, guarded one of the biggest supply chains of the Union Army—the railroad lines located in Mexico, Missouri, throughout the war. Was this a battlefield death, or was it murder? Surrounded on all sides by Southern sympathizers, did the Rebels kill this Union soldier?

1862: United States Army Lieutenant Cormac O’Malley has a problem. He knows there is a Rebel spy in his camp, and he needs proof of the spy to save the lives of Union soldiers. He has no choice but to work with his sweetheart from town, Enid Connelly, and her local friends to uncover the proof. Are they trustworthy and loyal to the Union in a state divided between North and South? Can he reveal the identity of the spy before the spy can silence him—possibly forever?

Take a walk through time with Show Me Deceit, book two of the Show Me Mystery Series. The mysteries are set in Mexico, Missouri, where death encompasses two eras—Civil War and contemporary times. Liesl, Nicole, and Detective Kurt Hunter, have previously put a killer behind bars. Now they must combine their skills again to stop the plunder of local charities and solve the mystery of a Union soldier’s death. Can Liesl and Kurt work together again as friends, putting aside their former romance, to solve these mysteries?


Other Books In This Series

I immediately liked Liesl when I met her on the pages of book one, so I have been looking forward to spending time with her again in Show Me Deceit. The great old house she lives in and the supporting characters in her life are further reasons to keep up with this series, not to mention the layered mysteries that Withers constructs across two separate timelines.

One of my favorite things about Show Me Deceit was the first POV from the villains in each timeline – an unrepentant thief in the present day thread and the spy in the historical. The author’s choice to write their perspective this way kept me so intrigued and made me even more invested in figuring out who belonged to each moniker. I was picking up subtle clues in the 1st person monologues and would then try to catch the other characters giving something away in the regular, third person narrative. TRY being the operative word there because I just ended up feeling like I couldn’t trust anyone haha. The mark of a well-plotted mystery! Plus, who knew Missouri had a Graceland too??

Some other fave aspects of Show Me Deceit centered around Kurt, Liesl’s high school sweetheart who hasn’t stopped loving her despite the rocky end to their relationship years ago. Along those lines, my ‘team Kurt-and-Liesl-forever’ heart had much to rejoice over in this book, and that’s all I’m going to say about that. You’ll have to discover any developments in the romance department for yourself! But in addition to that, I laughed out loud at a certain conversation between Kurt and the crochety Mrs. Sizemore. Hands down, my fave scene in the book – I could see the whole thing playing out in my head as I read.

Bottom Line: Be prepared to trust no one as you dive into the mysteries waiting for you in Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. Withers! No matter which timeline you’re in – present day or 1862 – your sleuthing senses will be buzzing as you try to root out the persons who aren’t who they claim to be. They’ve fooled a lot of people so far – will they fool you too? Once again, Liesl is a strong heroine with a determined spirit and a warm heart, and I enjoyed reacquainting myself with her & other characters I met in book one. I also enjoyed meeting new faces like Enid, who is equally as brave and kind in 1862 as Liesl is in the present day. The dialogue is sometimes too formal or does too much ‘telling’ in places, but it’s easy to overlook those minor preference issues when the mysteries and the characters are so engaging. Looking forward to more visits to past & present Mexico, Missouri, with this series!

(I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book which I read via Kindle Unlimited. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 4 stars / enjoyed it!

KissingBook Level: 2 / warm rosy glow of sweetness

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Ellen E. Withers

Ellen E. Withers draws upon her experiences growing up in Mexico, Missouri, and incorporates the fantastic architecture and deep historical roots of the town into her mystery series. A love of investigation encompasses every page of these mysteries because of her former career as an insurance fraud investigator. She enjoys spending time with her family, singing with Top of the Rock Chorus, and traveling. Connect with Ellen on her website.

Other Featured Books by Ellen E. Withers

A Gift for All Time by Tonya B. Ashley, Jenny Carlisle & Ellen E. Withers

Show Me Deceit giveaway

Ellen E. Withers is offering a print copy of Show Me Deceit 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 Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. Withers?

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24 responses to “Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. Withers

  1. Kay Garrett

    Love dual timeline stories and this one sounds oh so good! Can’t wait for the opportunity to read and review it.

  2. Janice Moore

    This book sounds fascinating! The ways the point of view is presented is certainly interesting! The characters, settings and dual timelines add to the appeal!

  3. Nancy

    I would like to read Show Me Deceit by Ellen E. Withers because I have not read any of her books yet.

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