Book Review: "Falls Like Lightning" by Shawn Grady

Summary from When hotshot smoke jumper Silas Kent gets his own fire crew, he thinks he's achieved what he's always wanted. But a lightning-sparked fire in the Desolation Wilderness of the Sierra Nevadas has his team in a plane before they can even train together.

Pilot Elle Westmore has been called up to drop the crew into the heart of the forest infernos. A single mother of a mysteriously ill six-year-old, she can't imagine her life getting any more complicated.

It doesn't take long for things to go very wrong, very quickly. A suspicious engine explosion forces Elle to make an emergency landing. Silas is able to parachute to safety but soon discovers his crew can't be trusted. They're hiding something, and now Silas is on a race to save himself and Elle from the flames—and from a more dangerous threat: his own team.

I've had Shawn Grady's books in my TBR pile for a while but haven't really had time to get around to reading them. When I saw that he had another new book coming out, I decided that it was finally time to cave. I don't really know much about smoke jumpers but reading about what they do in this book makes them sound incredibly brave. There's no way I could do what they do and it's a job that's both dangerous and thrilling at the same time. I really liked Elle's character because even though she's a woman, she's really good at what she does and is highly respected for it. Her relationship with Silas has its ups and downs but there's not too much romance in the story that would drive away male readers. I was quite geeked to see that Arcade Fire got a mention in this book. That's the second Christian fiction book I've read in the past month to insert them in the story so I'm really geeked to see them get coverage in this market.

While I found the premise and overall plot interesting, I found the suspense parts to fall rather short. I found myself not really caring about the villain. In fact, this sound horrible, but I really don't remember much about him. I really enjoyed the parts of the story that focused on Elle and Silas and I kept wanting the story to get back to them. I also found the sections on Elle's daughter to be a bit boring because the story didn't really focus on her like I thought it would.

Overall though, it's an interesting read though. I really liked learning more about the smoke jumpers and their line of duty. They should get more recognition for what they do. I still will go back and read the other books by Grady that I have. I've heard so many great things about them so I'm sure that they will be good reads.

Falls Like Lightning by Shawn Grady is published by Bethany House (2011)

This review copy was provided for a blog tour with the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


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