Monday, May 25, 2015

LETHAL EXPOSURE by Elisabeth Rees

Sybil Bates McCormack reviews.

Love Inspired Suspense author Elisabeth Rees wastes no time chucking widowed photographer Rebecca Grey smack dab into the throes of peril and intrigue in the marvelous Lethal Exposure. The first of five books in Mrs. Rees’ Navy Seal Defenders series, Lethal Exposure opens with Rebecca placing a frantic 911 call to the local emergency operator during the wee hours of the morning. Mrs. Grey definitely has cause for concern. Roused from sleep by the ominous sounds of a stranger rummaging through her things on the first floor of her home, she’s locked herself in the master bath on the second.

When the 911 call disconnects while she and the operator are clarifying her location, Rebecca grows concerned that help will be slow in coming. Turns out her fears are far from unfounded. The Florida sheriff’s deputies dispatched to her house fly right by her home on their way to the wrong address. Not frightened enough for our hapless heroine yet? Well, try this little monkey wrench on for size. Sounds like the stranger’s making his way upstairs.

What to do? What to do? … Finger snap. Of course. Call retired Navy Seal Conrad “Jack” Jackson, her late husband’s BFF for help.

Fortunately for Rebecca, Jack’s very forgiving. Responding to a panicked 3:00 a.m. cry for help from Ian Grey’s beautiful, talented widow is right up his alley. He’s easily ten minutes away by car, of course, and Rebecca’s already called the police. But what difference does any of that make? Once a Navy Seal, always a Navy Seal. And a promise is a promise. Caring, courageous and—maybe just a little sprung on the woman he swore to his friend he’d protect with his life—Jack jumps into action. By the time the bumbling sheriff’s deputies have grasped their mistake, and made their way back to Rebecca Grey’s now topsy-turvy home, Jack has already tussled with the bad guy and chased him away.

But, what was he after? Was the burglary a random act? Do Rebecca and her two sweet little girls remain in harm’s way?

Lethal Exposure is a quick, highly enjoyable read—chock full of every element a reader looks for in an inspirational romantic suspense novel. Rough and tumble fights. Surprising plot developments. Likeable, but imperfect, protagonists whose faith is borne of, and/or tested by, the escalating trials in which they find themselves. And, of course, growing angst and fluttering hearts. It’s all there.

But Mrs. Rees’ intimate exploration of the main characters’ internal journeys proves particularly gratifying. It’s been eighteen (18) months since Ian Grey succumbed to an untimely death in war-torn Afghanistan, but the lasting repercussions of his death linger everywhere for Jack and Rebecca. The author adroitly invites the reader into the couple’s world, their hearts and their psyches. We thoroughly comprehend the mental and emotional obstacles that threaten their capacity to commit to one another. Jack’s struggling to convince himself that things are fine just the way they are (with the exception of the dangers to Rebecca’s life that lurk around every corner—that is). Why complicate matters with talk of romance? Rebecca’s his best friend’s wife anyway—even in death, right? Our fearless heroine is equally perplexed. Jack deserves a chance to find the right woman and start a family of his own. Rebecca’s been married. Known true love. It’s Jack’s turn to be happy, and it’s Rebecca’s job to give him a push in the right direction. That’s what God would want—isn’t it?

You gotta love a book that pushes the main characters to their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual limits. Lethal Exposure—the perfect summer read for the booklover in you. Can’t wait to dive into the rest of Elisabeth Rees’ splendid new series.

About the reviewer:

A licensed Georgia attorney since 1998, Sybil Bates McCormack now writes healthcare proposals during the day while lurching haltingly toward becoming an inspirational romantic suspense author at night. She's also the crazed wife of a bi-vocational pastor and mom to two bright, talented kids. They don't call her BizzySyb for nothing! You can visit Sybil at her blog, Christian Romance/Pulsating Suspense, follow her on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter, friend her on GoodReads, connect with her on LinkedIn, and add her to your circles on Google+.


  1. Thanks, Marji! Here's hoping more readers give this little gem a look see.

  2. Love "new-to-me authors." I think you liked this one, Sybil. :)

    1. You're right, Sandra. I did. I was particularly impressed by what Mrs. Rees was able to accomplish on this one in light of the fact that she lives in the UK. It can't be easy writing for an audience that lives--in large part--"across the pond."

  3. Hi Sybil. Thanks so much for this great review of Lethal Exposure. I'm really glad you enjoyed it. You're right about it not being easy to write for an American audience, but my editor (Shana Asaro) weeds out all my Britishisms and turns me into an apple pie American. Book two of the Navy Seal Defenders series is out in January 2016 and book three is out in March 2016. After this 5 book series is complete, I'm hankering after writing an LIH Regency. After all, I already have the accent for it.

    1. Hi, Elisabeth. What a treat to welcome you to our little corner of the Web! I'm so glad you enjoyed the review and definitely look forward to reading more of the Navy Seal Defender series. (Kudos to Shana Asaro for helping to Americanize--or as you would probably spell it, Americanise--your writing. LOL!)

      I have to say that I certainly understand your wanting to write a Regency for LIH. (Don't tell anyone, but I secretly love that genre as well. :-) ) I can't wait to see what you'll come up with for the Austen lovers among us. Thanks so much for popping by. Blessings!


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