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March 21, 2017

Review: If I’m Found (If I Run #2) by Terri Blackstock

by Elisabeth Scherer
If im found, book review, blackstock
March 2017; Zondervan/HarperCollins
9780310332480; ebook, audio, print (352 pages)
christian, mystery, thriller
a free ARC was provided for this review
This is the first Terri Blackstock book that I have had the chance to read and boy let me tell you I am a fan! I knew nothing about these characters even though this is book two in the If I Run series. The good news is this book does stand on its own for readability. Blackstock gives enough information to pull us into the story from the start. The urge to keep turning pages continues to the end of the book.
Casey is a girl on the run. She is a suspect in a murder she did not commit. Dylan is a private investigator hired by the victim’s family to hunt her down. The thing is, Dylan isn’t sure Casey committed the crime. Casey collects evidence on the real murderers to clear her name. She should be keeping her head down and find the evidence. Her conscience nags at her to help people she comes meets along her journey. This moral dilemma is a common occurrence in the book and makes for an interesting topic of discussion for book clubs reading this story. Would you do what is right even if it meant losing the chance to clear your name?
Ms. Blackstock is a wonder at developing characters with complex feelings and problems. It is these rich details that appeal to me as a reader. It makes the characters come alive. Casey is a smart girl. Her father was a cop and she has inherited his knack for helping people and solving mysteries and crimes. She is also humble and compassionate. Now if she could just solve the one that could ruin her life. Dylan has so many interesting facets as well. A war veteran with PTSD, best friends with the murder victim. Feelings of some kind for this girl he is hunting. What does Dylan do when he’s paid to find the girl that murdered his best friend and he believes she didn’t do it? He let her escape once before when he could have captured her.
The pacing of the book is spot on without even a moment’s pause to say this part is slow. Plot twists and action-packed close calls follow these characters through to the end. Blackstock turns the screw tighter in this book with tension and nail-biting conflict. I was not surprised to finish with me wanting to read the next chapter of this sojourn.
It’s also refreshing to read a book that also contains a great message and has substance. There is mention and discussion of God in the characters’ lives as well as life purpose and prayer. Blackstock writes it in a wonderful way with both main characters introspections and discussions. I think it adds a layer of dimension to Casey and Dylan as they are moving through a unique time in their own lives.
The book kaleidoscope with three separate perspectives: Casey’s, Dylan’s, and Officer Keegan’s. The transition shifts are smooth with enough focus on each viewpoint to drive the story forward. It doesn't jump back and forth too quick. It’s a dynamic way to move readers through the story.
I liked the book so much that I went out and immediately purchased the first book in the series, If I Run. I then devoured that book too. I will be reviewing it that book soon.
If I’m Found is available today at all major book retailers. Grab your popcorn, tuck up under a blanket, and mark your calendars as busy - do not disturb!

Buy If I’m Found on Amazon
Elisabeth Scherer grew up in a very small town in Minnesota but now lives in the lovely Pacific Northwest where she spends most of her time raising her two young children. She and her husband have a large collection of books that takes a good space of their small condo. When she's not reading she has a variety of hobbies that include crocheting, drawing, baking, cooking, and movie watching. She is currently obsessed with making French macarons and other baked deliciousness. You can also find her blogging at http://kitchenstoriesetc.blogspot.com

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