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Book Review

A Child Is Torn
by Dawn Kopman Whidden

Series:
#1 in Whitley And Keal Mystery

Category:  Mystery

Average Rating:  4.0

When dependable Evan Madison fails to show up for work, police are dispatched to his home. His ten-year-old son, Brad, is discovered inside, unharmed and seemingly alone. He is stoic, sitting in front of the television playing his favorite video game, Super Mario--and he's covered in blood.

Veteran Police Officer Marty Keal is the first on the scene. With his many years of experience, he thinks he's seen it all. That is, until he discovers Brad's not really alone after all. Upstairs in their bedroom lies the brutally bludgeoned and deceased bodies of both Brad's mother and father. When questioned, Brad confesses to the horrific murders.

When Brad is transferred to a local mental health institution for children, Dr. Hope Rubin is brought in to evaluate and treat the child. A preliminary investigation shows no evidence of any kind of mistreatment in his past. She must determine the disturbing truth: Is Brad telling the truth? Or is he covering for someone else?

Detective Jean Whitely rounds out the investigative team; and she suspects there is much more to the case than what meets the eye. The happily married mother of two is unwavering in her determination to uncover the real truth about Brad. Was he abused? Or is he the product of an evil seed born to kill?

As the layers of truth about Brad are systematically peeled away, you will be compelled to ask yourself, which is the more dominate factor in contributing to who we are--NATURE or NURTURE?

Jeff

[2017-09-02 23:02:13]

Rating:  4

This is a strongly character-driven mystery. In fact, the resolution to the mystery is rather anticlimactic. It's the weakest element of the story and the main reason why I can't give it a perfect rating.

The romance tends towards sappiness in a few places, and it's certainly predictable, but not so much so as to spoil the story. I really, really like these characters and look forward to more in this series.

Beth A. McIntosh delivers a respectable performance. She makes an effort to give the characters distinctive voices, but this book is one that might have benefitted from multiple narrators.

NOTE: I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.


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