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Dead Witness Paperback – June 28, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
The primary character, Valerie McCormick, will win your heart. Vulnerable and full of self doubt, she is fiercely strong when her family is threatened. And the antagonists, the deadly DeOlmos brothers, are creepy, charming, and gorgeous - enough to make any sane reader get up and lock the doors.
Ms. Butler, a Canadian native, sets her tale in Seattle; Prince George, Canada; and Los Cabos, Mexico. The story races from one place to another, leaving you gasping with its twists and turns. The delightfully complex plot rivals any police story I've read, and the compelling characters far surpass those usually found in genre fiction.
If you like a dynamic read with remarkable characters, get out and buy Dead Witness
The FBI has been trying to track down this evasive Miquel DeOlmos. Witnesses end up dead when they try to testify against this Latin drug lord. Valerie agrees to help, but she has no idea what's in store and ends up in a witness protection program only to find out it's not enough. When her children's safety is at risk, she takes matters into her own hands by hunting down DeOlmos herself.
My only complaint was I didn't completely believe all of the FBI procedures. Keep in mind, I'm not expert and all of it might be true. As a reader, I wasn't convinced.
Although the story was about the FBI and witness protection, it had a CSI Miami feel to it. I loved the story. The characters were crystal clear with depth. Once I got started, I had trouble putting the book down.
Joylene Nowell Butler is an author to put on your watch list. Her books are packed with non-stop suspense and I look forward to reading more.
Valerie McCormick lives outside of Prince George, British Columbia, and is married to Ed. Together they own a small logging business and are the parents of three daughters, ages 18, 17 and 12. Valerie's girls write a paragraph about their mother for a Mother's Day contest and consequently win her a free two-day trip to Jasper, Vancouver or Seattle.
She chooses the last city at the request of her husband, who in an attempt to woo a new client, wants Valerie to photograph a luxury boat the client is interested in buying, but is too busy to view in-person at the Seattle harbor where the vessel is berthed.
Valerie is on her way to photograph the boat when she witnesses the murder.
Ms. Butler does a great job of quickly establishing what makes Valerie tick and the main problem with which she'll have to contend. Rather than clunk us readers over the head by telling us that Ed is a lout, Ms. Butler instead shows us Valerie's grace and loyalty. She does as her husband asks because he's the father of her three girls and is trying hard to earn the money necessary to keep them safe and happy.
Thus Ms. Butler shows us that above all else, Valerie loves her daughters and will do whatever is necessary to keep them safe.
The question, of course, is how far will she have to go to keep her daughters safe? And thus the story takes off like a shot.
The story also hits upon a unique angle by highlighting the legal and jurisdictional difficulties, obligations and issues surrounding a situation in which a citizen of one country witnesses a crime in another.
Lastly, while Ms. Butler describes many landscapes as the story moves from place to place, from Canada to the U.S. to Mexico, the landscape that's most beautifully rendered is that of the British Columbia countryside.
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