I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Tell No Lies by Allison Brennan
Published by MIRA on March 30, 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Crime, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
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New York Times bestselling author Allison Brennan's newest thriller again features an edgy young female LAPD detective and an ambitious special agent, both part of a mobile FBI unit that is brought in to investigate the unsolved murder of a college activist and its alleged ties to high stakes crime in the desert Southwest.
Something mysterious is killing the wildlife in the desert hills just south of Tucson, Arizona. When Emma Perez, a college-intern-turned activist, sets out to collect her own evidence, she too ends up dead. Local law enforcement seems slow to get involved. That’s when the mobile FBI unit goes undercover to infiltrate the town and the copper refinery located there in search of possible leads. Costa and Quinn find themselves scouring the desolate landscape that keeps on giving up clues to something much darker—greed, child trafficking, other killings. As the body count continues to add up, it's clear they have stumbled on more than they bargained for. Now they must figure out who is at the heart of this mayhem and stop them before more innocent lives are lost.
Brennan's latest novel brims with complex characters and an ever-twisting plotline, a compelling thriller that delivers.
Allison Brennan isn’t a new-to-me author, having read Love Me To Death and Notorious in the past and enjoyed both of these books. The second installment in the Quinn & Costa Thriller series is Tell No Lies. Focusing on a mobile FBI unit as they investigate the murder of a college student and illegal dumping by a copper refinery in the desert. It starts with the murder of an intern who’s convinced that she can get to the bottom of animal deaths by poisoning on her own, and soon spirals into more bodies as the investigation goes deeper into child trafficking, dirty deals, and just pure selfishness and greed.
Set in Arizona, there are multiple fronts as the team investigates in the small town of Patagonia. Headed up by Special Agent in Charge Matt Costa, an undercover team has infiltrated the copper refinery, the local watering hole where the employees go on their off hours, as well as having the refinery owner’s son in league with the FBI. Kara Quinn is a Los Angeles police detective working for the FBI temporarily due to a bounty placed on her head back in California. When Quinn finds evidence of child trafficking out in the desert near where an employee of the refinery was murdered, she won’t let it drop until they find out what’s happening. This small town in the Arizona desert seems to be the backdrop for murder, human trafficking, and even drugs/gun running. It just comes down to who is behind everything, and will Costa and Quinn come out unscathed?
Multiple points of views are included, and I enjoyed how each of the team members were fleshed out in this book. Having not read the first installment, I did feel like I was missing quite a bit between the characters. I couldn’t really connect with them right away and it was slow going for a good portion of the first half. But after that, the tension and suspense continued to mount as the danger to the team members increased, as well as my enjoyment of the book. The multiple POVs did lead to several characters explaining the same thing over again, such as their forensics’ guy being absent due to a trial in another state.
I give Tell No Lies a 3.5 out of five. I really enjoyed the Arizona setting, having lived in Phoenix as a child and holding nothing but fond memories for the area. The budding romance between Quinn and Costa was on the backburner here, so this book was a straight-up procedural thriller/suspense. Going through the entire investigation from start to finish allowed the reader to get a better understanding of the main characters, exploring both their working lives as well as personal lives. I enjoyed this well-rounded look at the characters, but the slow starts of an investigation as the start to put the pieces together made it a slow pace for me. Allison Brennan’s writing was atmospheric and very realistic when it comes to investigations.
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About Allison Brennan
ALLISON BRENNAN is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of over thirty novels. She has been nominated for Best Paperback Original Thriller by International Thriller Writers and the Daphne du Maurier Award. A former consultant in the California State Legislature, Allison lives in Arizona with her husband, five kids and assorted pets.
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