Book Review: If I Run by Terri Blackstock

Book Review: If I Run by Terri BlackstockIf I Run by Terri Blackstock
Published by Harper Collins on February 16th 2016
Genres: Christian, Fiction, Suspense, Thrillers
Pages: 320
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CASEY KNOWS THE TRUTH. BUT IT WON’T SET HER FREE.   Casey Cox’s DNA is all over the crime scene. There’s no use talking to police; they’ve failed her abysmally before. She has to flee before she’s arrested . . . or worse. The truth doesn’t matter anymore.   But what is the truth? That’s the question haunting Dylan Roberts, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. PTSD has marked him damaged goods, but bringing Casey back can redeem him. Though the crime scene seems to tell the whole story, details of the murder aren’t adding up. Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer. But are Dylan’s skewed perceptions keeping him from being objective? If she isn’t guilty, why did she run?   Unraveling her past and the evidence that condemns her will take more time than he has, but as Dylan’s damaged soul intersects with hers, he is faced with two choices: the girl who occupies his every thought is a psychopathic killer . . . or a selfless hero. And the truth could be the most deadly weapon yet.

While I have come to learn that Terri Blackstock is a well known author, this was the first of her books I’ve ever read. If I Run is the first book in a series also named If I Run. I’m really glad I got in on the first book, so I’ll be all set to read the rest in the series.  Yes, I’ll be reading the future books too.

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If I Run is written in first person and present tense and it is with two points of view – alternating between the two main characters – namely, Casey Cox and Dylan Roberts. This style of writing really builds up the tension in this story and it puts the reader right in the center of it all.

Ms. Blackstock first introduces us to Casey as she is cleaning blood off her tennis shoes and packing up to skip town. Her DNA is all over a crime scene and she is a fugitive who is running for her life. Dylan is the man hired to look for Casey. Right from the start, readers aren’t really clear about Casey’s guilt or innocence and this isn’t disclosed until we are pretty far into the story. It definitely kept the suspense going throughout the story, which for me, made for good reading.

We learn that Casey is running from the real killers. She is smart and knows how to avoid the cops and as the story progresses, Dylan begins to think Casey cannot actually be the killer too. 

The author also works in a secondary plot, but I don’t want this to be a spoiler so I’ll just tell you it is an exciting side story that doesn’t distract readers from the main plot.

If I Run is a well written book with well developed characters. This book is chalked full of unexpected twists and turns, which, added to the ongoing suspense of the story makes readers excited for the second installment to this series. I’ll definitely be on the lookout for that sequel!

If you’d like to know more about this book as well as other Thomas Nelson/Zondervan books, feel free to head over to TNZ Fiction’s Official Website here! 

Terri Blackstock is a New York Times and USA Today best-seller, with over seven million books sold worldwide. She is the winner of two Carol Awards, a Christian Retailers Choice Award, and a Romantic Times Book Reviews Career Achievement Award, among others. She has had over twenty-five years of success as a novelist. Terri spent the first twelve years of her life traveling in an Air Force family. She lived in nine states and attended the first four years of school in The Netherlands. Because she was a perpetual “new kid,” her imagination became her closest friend. That, she believes, was the biggest factor in her becoming a novelist. She sold her first novel at the age of twenty-five, and has had a successful career ever since.

In 1994 Terri was writing romance novels under two pseudonyms for publishers such as HarperCollins, Harlequin, Dell and Silhouette, when a spiritual awakening prompted her to switch gears. At the time, she was reading more suspense than romance, and felt drawn to write thrillers about ordinary people in grave danger. Her newly awakened faith wove its way into the tapestry of her suspense novels, offering hope instead of despair. Her goal is to entertain with page-turning plots while challenging her readers. She hopes to remind them that they’re not alone, and that their trials have a purpose.

Terri has appeared on national television programs such as “The 700 Club” and “Home Life,” and has been a guest on numerous radio programs across the country. The story of her personal journey appears in books such as Touched By the Savior by Mike Yorkey, True Stories of Answered Prayer by Mike Nappa, Faces of Faith by John Hanna, and I Saw Him In Your Eyes by Ace Collins.

I received a paperback copy of this book without cost from the publisher through The Fiction Guild, a Thomas Nelson/Zondervan book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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