13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on September 5, 2013
Critical Pursuit is a fantastic book! Of course, I'm a fan of suspense novels and have enjoyed Janice Cantore's previous books, but this one was my favorite so far! The book is a bit grittier than her previous books (but nothing over the top). I was totally caught up in the police drama, and all of the personal drama just added to my enjoyment of the book.
Cantore found the perfect balance for Brinna's character. She was so anti-God and obsessed with her work (which sometimes makes a character easy to dislike). However, she was so personable that I found myself rooting for her early on. Jack was similar. I felt his raw emotions and couldn't help but want the best for him ... even if he was a little "off" at times.
If you enjoy police dramas, I think you'll love Critical Pursuit! [4.5 stars]
* Note: This book was previously published as The Kevlar Heart.
I received a free copy of this book from Tyndale House in exchange for my fair and honest review.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on August 14, 2013
I received this book in the mail on Monday. By Tuesday mid-afternoon I was done. I could not put it down.
As a child, Brinna is abducted and left for dead. As an adult, she helps to find abducted. After a shooting on the job, she is transferred to patrol and partnered with Jack- a burned out homicide cop who lost his wife. As they go through shifts and life changing events together in their short two week rotation, they are thrown into a search that turns personal for Brinna. Will Brinna and Jack find God in their search to bring a killer to justice?
This book was really, really good. Like I said I finished it in 24 hours. The author keep you pulled into the story from the first chapter and keeps you guessing throughout the book. With an underlining search for God and also an underlining yearning for the characters to "get with it", the story just keeps going. I had not heard of Janice Cantore before this book but she is now on my author radar. Great for teenagers on up, men and women.
**I was provided a copy of this book from Tyndale publishers in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own. **
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2014
The writing was good and the characters were okay. The plot was pretty good. However, this should never have been in the romance section as there was no romance whatsoever, and it should have said "Christian fiction" somewhere in the description. I am a Christian but I don't want to read a book where God is discussed in every conversation. It is annoying and it takes away from the mystery. And it does a real disservice to the readers if that label isn't included in the description. If I had paid for this book, I would have demanded my money back on principle because of the failure to include "Christian fiction" in the description.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2013
Critical Pursuit by Janice Cantore is an inspiring, emotional story that will keep the reader in anticipation of what is to come. Officer Brinna Caruso, who was once abducted, focuses her career on rescuing abducted children. Brinna and her dog Hero have a special relationship to work together to track down the criminals. While Brinna denies God’s existence, her new partner Jack O’Reilly is recovering from the tragic death of his wife. Together, through finding a set of abducted twins, Brinna and Jack work to not only find the children, but also labor to find peace with God.
Tyndale House provided a complimentary copy of Critical Pursuit for review purposes. This novel is not the typical book that I normally read; however, I enjoyed accompanying Brinna on her journey to not only rescue children, but also find the peace from God she needed to fully enjoy her life. Janice Cantore did a wonderful job of compelling her audience to stay engrossed in the story. By the end the reader feels triumphant. Janice also inspires those whose relationship with God is stagnant and whose relationship is questioning His will to take a step back and focus on God’s everlasting love and grace.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2013
Critical Pursuit is the first book I've read by Janice Cantore and, when I first learned about it, I didn't know it was previously published by Oaktara in 2007 as The Kevlar Heart. I really liked this book and it reminded me a little bit of some of Lynette Eason's books. I thought the story was interesting throughout and, while it wasn't a secret to the reader who the villain was, there were still some suspenseful moments.
I liked the characters and seeing them grow as the story progressed. I'm definitely interested in reading the next book with Officer Brinna Caruso, Visible Threat, as Critical Pursuit ended with me wondering what was going to happen next in Brinna's and Jack's life.
Overall, Critical Pursuit was a really good suspense read. There wasn't a lot of romance, but there are hints of it developing. I recommend it to fans of this genre.
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 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.*
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2013
Was very difficult for me to stay with this book. It took a long time for it to capture my interest enough to finish reading it. The storyline was good but I never ended up caring about either of the main characters.
It's a decent enough read.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 12, 2013
MY THOUGHTS ON THIS BOOK
I love this book, it is a really, really great read! Brinna has a love for her work and her K9 search dog, and she is driven to find any missing child, no matter what. When Jack O'Reilly is assigned as her partner, she's just not sure how things will be because of the struggles he's had in his personal life.
Janice Cantore takes readers on a journey with two different people who are struggling with their past. Jack lost his wife to a drunk driver and can't seem to go on with his life, or his relationship with God. Brinna's job is her entire life because she was once one of the missing children she is now searching for, and she can think of nothing else but what she can do to find them. Despite what Jack and Brinna think, working together might be just what they need to open their eyes to the rest of the world. Ms. Cantore does a great job of creating characters and developing them throughout the story, causing them to steal their way into the hearts of readers! I really like Brinna and Jack and I read this book in one day, because I had to find out what would happen with them! This is a must read for those who enjoy suspense and cop stories. You will not be disappointed!
I received this book from Tyndale House to read and review. 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 55.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 6, 2013
Brinna Caruso was kidnapped at the age of six and through the years has turned her back on God. Her kidnapper comes back to haunt her as she and Hero try to find missing children. But God is with her through it all. I look forward to Visible Threat coming out early in the new year to catch up with Brinna and Hero and get to know them better.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on October 21, 2013
Hello Friends! Today, I have a cop thriller for you: Critical Pursuit by Janice Cantore! (I received a NetGalley copy of this book for my honest review from the publisher Tyndale House) This is the first book I've read by this former Long Beach, CA police officer, and it was fantastic! I have a couple of her other books on my Kindle, and now I'm super excited to read them! Critical Pursuit is a re-release by Tyndale House, formerly titled The Kevlar Heart.
Summary: Brinna Caruso is the cop you want when your child is missing. Known for her tenacity and her "wall of slime" dedicated to the pedophiles and child abusers in her area, Brinna is determined to track down every missing child she can and bring them to safety. Why so passionate? Because twenty years earlier, Brinna herself was abducted and left in the desert to die. Had it not been for Milo, the cop that saved her, she wouldn't have survived. Now, twenty years later, Brinna and her search and rescue dog, Hero, have stumbled onto a series of kidnappings that are remarkably similar to her own, and they must figure out who is behind them! Brinna's own kidnapper was killed several years before, so who is this copycat? Meanwhile, her personal life is falling apart, her faith in God is non-existent, and thanks to a media crazed lawyer, she is stuck with a partner who isn't all there.
Jack O'Reilly lost his wife and unborn child to a drunk driver nearly a year ago. Formerly, one of the best homicide detectives that Long Beach, CA had to offer, he is now hanging on by a thread, more consumed with getting revenge for his wife and daughter than catching any murderers. Re-assigned to patrol, he is partnered with Brinna, and together they must work through their personal lives, their jobs, and their faith.
What I liked: The plot was great. While I figured a few things out here and there, it was fun to see how it all came together in the end. I also enjoyed that it wasn't too gruesome, but still got the point across. The "wall of slime" is awesome, as is Brinna's tenacity and desire to keep kids safe. Jack and Brinna's chemistry is goof too, and Hero is just plain awesome!
What I didn't like: Part of me didn't like that it was about child molesters. Nothing graphic happened or anything, and it did make a great story, I just get so mad at the IDEA of children being victimized that it makes it hard to read about sometimes. Other than that, I don't have any complaints.
Take Away: Jack and Brinna both struggled with hatred, revenge, and where God was in their pain. Ms. Cantore does a really good job dealing with these issues, especially the "Where is God?" question. How monsters can harm children and get away with it is sickening, but trying to figure out why God allows it to happen is even harder. Sin is terrible, and rest assured, God HATES it when children are harmed. There is no easy answer for why it happens, but know that even in the pain, God is still there and can and will bring healing. It isn't easy, but he will if you ask for it. If you, or someone you know has been victimized, please find someone to talk to, preferably a Christian counselor who can help you work through your hurt, and help you on the path to healing. If you suspect someone you know has been victimized, or is an abuser, please report it, and make sure the victim is somewhere safe!
Overall, this was a good read, and I really want to read the rest of her books now. This book challenged me to think about how I can help those who have been victimized, but also how to help them spiritually as well. It gave me a lot to think about on the theological side of things, and some of it I'm still chewing on. I hope you enjoy this book! It isn't preachy, I just took away a lot from that side of things. If you like cop thrillers, or mysteries, you'll enjoy it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 9, 2013
Officer Brinna Caruso has an obsession with missing children since she was once a missing child herself. She has built up a reputation as the one to call when a child goes missing and will stop at nothing to find them.
Jack O'Reilly chooses to move to patrol as he isn't ready to return to homicide after his wife and unborn child were killed by a drunk driver and is partnered up with Brinna--something neither one of them is happy about.
I enjoyed the storyline is this book very much. Much of it felt realistic, some didn't. Jack's super quick turnaround from being considered on the edge of insanity from anger and bitterness and close to being kicked out of the department was just a bit too quick to feel realistic. I loved Ben's character and wish there would have been a little more of him. It was great to see a friend of Jack's who is a christian as well, but doesn't give up on Jack when he turns his back on God.
You can tell this is not a stand alone book as there are questions left at the end of the book. The main storyline is wrapped up pretty good, but lots of loose ends in the characters lives are screaming "sequel".
I liked this book, but I can't say I "loved" it. I would like to see what a sequel would do with these characters, though, so I'm keeping an open mind for the next book.
I received a digital copy of this book from NetGalley.com for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own