About the Book
Book: Fragments of Fear
Author: Carrie Stuart Parks
Release date: July 23, 2019
From award-winning author Carrie Stuart Parks comes a new novel with danger that reaches from a New Mexico Anasazi archaeological dig to micro- and nano-chip technology.
Evelyn Yvonne McTavish-Tavish to her friends-had her almost perfect world in Albuquerque, New Mexico, come to a crashing end with the suicide of her fiancé. As she struggles to put her life back together and make a living from her art, she’s given the news that her dog is about to be destroyed at the dog 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.
Tavish recognizes the dog as one owned by an archaeologist named Pat Caron because she did a commissioned drawing of the two of them months earlier. The simple solution is to return the dog to his owner, but she arrives only to discover Caron’s murdered body.
After meeting undercover FBI agent Sawyer Price the mystery deepens as more people start disappearing and Tavish becomes a target as well. Her only solution is to find the links between microchip technology, an Anasazi site in the desert, her fiancé’s death, a late-night radio show, and the dog. And the clock is ticking.
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From cover to cover, Fragments of Fear was a total page turner! I was instantly wrapped up into Tavish’s world and could palpably feel the suspense as the drama unfolded. It’s a psychological suspense novel that gets inside your mind and will kick your thoughts into overdrive. Did a murder actually happen or was Tavish’s mind really playing tricks on her? Which characters are truly the good and bad guys? Where does her mother truly fit into the puzzle? There were answers I simply needed to know and thus my nose was in the book until the very end.
Although I was fully captivated by the action and suspense in this novel, I have to admit that the faith element was rough for me. Tavish started out saying she wasn’t religious but also wore a necklace symbolizing her belief in the power of crystals. The only time she expressed interest in calling out to God was when she was being chased and was asking for His help in escaping. There really needed to be another strong Christian character to have more dialogue with especially since there was only one verse she called to remembrance from her grandmother in the past. It felt like God was minimized to a wishmaker and so I really struggled with that aspect.
If you’re looking for a page-turning psychological suspense then this is one I could easily recommend. I needed more from the faith element, but the story itself held my attention and kept the pages turning rapidly. I’m curious what the author will come up with next.
*I received a copy of this book from the author. Thoughts and opinions expressed are mine alone.
About the Author
Carrie Stuart Parks is a Christy finalist as well as a Carol Award-winning author. She has won numerous awards for her fine art as well. An internationally known forensic artist, she travels with her husband, Rick, across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law-enforcement professionals. The author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing and painting, Carrie continues to create dramatic watercolors from her studio in the mountains of Idaho.
More from Carrie
Using Art to Solve Crime: Techniques Used by Forensic Artists
Since 1981, I’ve been a forensic artist—an amazing feat since I’m only . . .um. . . well, younger than that. In those years, I’ve seen some shifts and trends, but some things have never changed. Despite the overwhelming prevalence of computers in almost every other field, they have never been able to replace a trained forensic artist. Artists have an amazing toolbox of techniques we use to gather the information we need to help solve crime.
- The pencil. Any forensic artist worth her weight in graphite knows the power of the lowly pencil and a sketchpad. Law enforcement would love a photographic image of the suspect, but all we have to work with is memory…and memory is faulty. The more the image looks perfect, the more imperfect it is for helping to identify a suspect. We want the drawing to just suggest a likeness and eliminate those not similar.
- Now that we brought up the subject of memory, a forensic artist needs to understand how memory works. The average witness will remember between four and five facial features. When they describe the person they saw, they will do so from their strongest memory to their weakest memory, from most important to least important. We listen carefully to the order of facial features.
- Whole vs Parts. We don’t look at faces as individual parts, although a particularly outstanding nose or Marty Feldman eyes might catch our attention. We will remember the face as a whole, with the proportions of the face an unacknowledged part of that. Forensic artist prefer to use reference photographs where the whole face is viewed.
Want more? Check out the rest of my article at The Strand Magazine
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To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away a grand prize of her book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
Thank you for your honest review. I’ve seen others not appreciate the theology of this story. I’m not a fan of this genre in general, so it’s already not a book I will read (I get really bad nightmares from these kinds of books). But it makes me sad the theology is off. I have an aunt who is into the healing power of crystals. It’s clear idol worship, and it’s a little nutty to be honest. My aunt goes so far as to sleep with the rocks under her pillow! Idol worship is never ok no matter what. God isn’t a by-product we go to after everything we’ve done has failed. He should be first always.
It’s not that the book says the crystals are ok.. it’s more that she goes from those types of beliefs to suddenly being a Christian after only hearing one verse (proverbs 3:5) and asking “God if you’re out there, help me out of danger.” There wasn’t a real conversion anywhere and it was all about what God could do for her.
I get the nightmares thing… sometimes it happens to me with this genre as well especially if I read a lot of them around the same time and/or I read them at night. I like them as long as they aren’t graphic but it’s definitely a genre I have to be careful with as well.
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