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Double Cross (FBI: Houston) by DiAnn Mills
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Double Cross (FBI: Houston)

by DiAnn Mills

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Double Cross is a fast-paced and engaging suspense/mystery novel. This is the second book in the FBI: Houston series, however it can stand alone as it is not directly connected to the plot of book one, entitled Firewall.

This book is full of action and is an engaging read. Protagonist Daniel Hilton has a gentleness and depth of character that is endearing, especially in regards to his care for his grandparents. Laurel’s involvement with ex-convict Morton Wilmington provides an interesting element to the story, as she is constantly questioning his motives and his loyalties (even as he questions hers).

As Christian suspense novel, the romantic element was present but not overbearing. I appreciated this as it seems Christian fiction often focuses entirely too much attention on the love-interest.

I received this book from bookfun.org in exchange for an honest review.

This review was posted to Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Goodreads, CBD, Deeper Shopping, and Library Thing (if available). ( )
  LoverOfStory | Jul 19, 2016 |
Double Cross, the second book in DiAnn Mills’ FBI: Houston series, is a standalone novel that combines fast-paced action, characters with great chemistry and a great message of grace. I listened to the audiobook and could not quit listening! The mystery kept me guessing while I grew attached to the characters. This book is a winner I can recommend.

Laurel Evertson was done with God when her parents were killed. Now an FBI agent she is determined to seek justice for the most vulnerable of society. When Morton Williamson, a man she helped put in jail, professes to have found God, she is more than skeptical, but the two are brought back together to uncover those involved in a scheme to rob Alzheimer’s patients. Daniel Hilton has a similar background to Laurel, but loving grandparents made a big difference in the course of his life. This Houston police officer joins the case when it becomes personal. The danger ramps up and its unclear just who can be trusted.

If you like an action-packed suspense novel, Double Cross is a good choice. There’s danger around every corner and the good guys are targets to be eliminated. But as good as the plot is, the characters were what kept me turning the pages. Laurel and Daniel have great chemistry as partners and as a couple. They have baggage to be sure, but their attraction is undeniable. Then there is Morton Williamson — a complex character that keeps you on your toes. I continually questioned if his conversion is the real deal or if he is the consummate con man. No spoilers here; you’ll have to decide for yourself! Daniel’s grandparents are also wonderful characters displaying love, grace and commitment. The novel also made me look at my own judgments concerning whether people really do change.

Another hit from DiAnn Mills, Double Cross is highly recommended for fans of romantic suspense. The plot, characterization and subject matter are complex enough for a great book club discussion as well. The audio production is well-done, so be prepared for a great listen.

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

Good for book clubs. ( )
  vintagebeckie | Oct 6, 2015 |
Double Cross
DiAnn Mills

Book Summary: FBI Agent Laurel Evertson’s investigation into a scam targeting the elderly takes an unexpected twist when key evidence leads her to Morton Wilmington, a felon she arrested five years ago on her first undercover assignment. That case has haunted her since, and though she’s vowed to forget Wilmington―and what she sacrificed to put him away―he is now her best lead. Houston Police Officer Daniel Hilton fears his grandparents may be the scammer’s next targets, and he’ll do anything to protect his family―even force interagency cooperation. But he’s quickly drawn to Laurel’s empathy and zeal and agrees to follow her lead . . . even if it means teaming up with a felon. As the unlikely trio uncovers evidence suggesting the scam is more extensive and deadly than they imagined, both Laurel and Daniel find themselves in the crosshairs of a killer. Together they must decide if they can trust Wilmington’s claims of redemption, or if he’s leading them straight into a double cross.

Review: Unlike my usual method I bought this as an audiobook and found the person reading the story to be so real that I forgot this along the way. This was a past paced mystery with so much going on that I really liked the pace. Many times my heart was beating so fast due to all the events going on. I really liked Lauren, Daniel and Morton. I too was flipping a coin page by page as to whether Morton was sincere or was he acting. That kept the pressure on throughout the story. I wanted Morton to have changed so bad. The ending was a bang! Literally although not so surprising. I thought like the first story that the end would have a twist, but it is hard to pull that twice in a row. While a full stand alone the first book in the series was competition and this story paced the first one decently. I did find this story to be a little unrealistic, although it does seem like today life is imitating art way too much. This is one book that was unabashedly Christian and not preachy just was always present. I really liked that a lot. Some books are becoming less Christ centered. Which is not a sole requirement. But this was refreshing to read. ( )
  Robin661 | Jul 26, 2015 |
Diann Mills immediately draws the reader into her world of excitement, crime lords, the FBI and subterfuge. Given that Laurel Everton has worked undercover to put Morton Wilmington in prison, imagine her surprise when her FBI bosses pair her with Wilmington,who supposedly has had a prison conversion. Will she be safe working with Wilmington, or is he out for the ultimate revenge? Is he behind the scams on the elderly, including HPD Daniel Hilton's grandparents?Who to trust, and who to trust with her heart?

Race-car fast paced action,enough twists and turns to satisfy mental roller coaster riders, and an emphasis on trusting God. My kind of story.

So many good quotes. Here are a few. "God works in mysterious ways we'll never understand." "I'm not on His dance card." "Yes, you are. All He wants is the opportunity to lead."

About finding your value in life and following His will, whether it makes sense to others or not:"My significance is in being available for whatever's needed."..."When you realize the life forward means more to God than the past, then what you do doesn't have to make sense." Good for those who can't forgive themselves or others for the past. Our God is more concerned about which direction we're headed, then where we've been.

Excellent, exciting book. I received this book from bookfun.org in exchange for an honest review ( )
  Becky_L | May 22, 2015 |
Double Cross is the second book of three in the FBI: Houston series. I have read and reviewed both the first and second books; they are both able to stand on their own as independent novels. The third book, Deadlock, is scheduled to come out in the Spring of 2016.

Houston Police Officer Daniel Hilton loved his grandparents. Together, the three of them loved the Lord and lived for Him. When his Gramps, a respected former accountant, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, they were all affected deeply. During the day, Gramps and Gran stayed at a high security memory facility six days a week. Daniel brought them home every evening after work. When Gramps mentioned some of his friends at the facility had bought life insurance, Daniel was concerned. When a large sum of money was missing from one of their accounts, he felt it was time to investigate. He had the complete cooperation of the facility's manager. But when some of the patients who had bought the insurance began to die, Gramps demanded they take the case to the FBI. Daniel stubbornly disagreed, but took them anyway.

Special Agent Laurel Evertson was in her office when Daniel and his grandparents arrived. She and her partner handled cases like white collar crimes, including elderly fraud. Laurel took charge of the meeting while two other agents asked questions. Theirs was not the first scam they had heard about. The FBI was investigating what appeared to be an organized attempt at targeting dementia patients. Millions of dollars were at stake. If lives were also threatened, this upped the ante for the Bureau. Laurel thought of an angle of investigation involving a former case of hers where her undercover work sent a man to prison. She wondered what he knew of these fraud cases. She decided going against FBI policy by visiting him in prison without another agent present. Her reasoning was personal. A couple days later, she was sent undercover again, this time making it appear she had betrayed the FBI and was fired. The object was to gain the confidence of the possible ring leader perpetrating the scams. Twists and turns in the plot keep the reader guessing with each new development.

When I read the first book in this series, the complexity of the plot was amazing; it riveted me to the book from start to finish. The same occurred to me with this book. DiAnn Mills writes more than just fast-paced mysteries and thrillers. She holds the readers enthralled, with questions around every corner. At one point, she had me guessing who could be trusted, who was on which side, who was the double crosser, and who was being double-crossed. While she is doing this, she is adding layers of character development while the major players race against time to prevent more elderly deaths. If you're not careful, this book will have you looking over your shoulder.

I love it when an author feeds you anticipation, in this case through the title. Because of this, the book feels a little bit like a "who-done-it" on steroids. But my favorite aspect in discovering the who, why, and how of the plot was the surprise (or should I say both surprises) at the end. At least one of them completely caught me off guard. I know this book will be placed with my favorite reads because I will want to read it over several times.

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn't mention how important the element of faith is in this book. There is no preaching here. Daniel and his grandparents' faith is expressed through action. They live it, 24/7. It is not compartmentalized and separated from the rest of their lives. It's this faith-in-action that speaks loudest to Laurel, who can't quite grasp the concept and personhood of God. In addition, there is one more person of faith I can't tell you about; it would spoil the plot. It is a part of the surprise at the conclusion of the investigation, the end of the book, and the turning point for Laurel. Now quit pestering me for more details and go read the book! You'll love it.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers for their blogging program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” ( )
  Beverlylynnt | Apr 10, 2015 |
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"FBI agent Laurel Evertson's investigation into a scam targeting the elderly takes an unexpected twist when key evidence leads her to Morton Wilmington, a felon she arrested five years ago on her first undercover assignment. That case has haunted her since, and though she's vowed to forget Wilmington--and what she sacrificed to put him away--he is now her best lead. Houston Police Officer Daniel Hilton fears his grandparents may be the scammers' next targets, and he'll do anything to protect his family--even force interagency cooperation"--Amazon.com.… (more)

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