Review: A Deadly Business

Mia Quinn is a prosecutor in the Violent Crimes Unit of Seattle, Washington. She’s also a recent widow because of a seemingly innocent car crash her husband was involved in. In this story, Mia is asked some tough questions surrounding her husband’s death. Was it really an accident because he was driving too fast? Or was there something more sinister going on because of her husband’s job? Some things just aren’t adding up surrounding that fateful night.
On top of seeking answers concerning her late husband, Mia must also decide the fate of three young boys who committed a horrible crime resulting in tragedy for one family. Mia must decide whether to charge these fifteen year-old boys as juveniles or adults. One thing is for certain for Mia Quinn in this fantastically-written story. NOTHING is black and white the way it would first seem.

I was very excited to get an opportunity to review a book-especially one of mystery and intrigue like this one. A Deadly Business certainly did not disappoint! There were several twists and turns in this story that made it all the more fun to read. I practically consumed each page as it was a wonderfully written and very descriptive page-turner. I appreciated that it wasn’t challenging with lots of unnecessary jargon or vocabulary. It was simplistic without feeling dumbed-down. I immediately felt for the character, Mia Quinn as she is a widow and a mom of two kids who is trying desperately to be both mother and father. After her husband’s death (which left her deep in debt because of his own secrets), Mia is forced to go back to work as a lawyer. And not that she doesn’t love her job; she does! But life is complicated enough without having to decide the fate of troubled youths who, if she decides should be tried as adults, could go away for life or possibly even be given the death penalty.

I enjoyed the overall story very much. There is great mystery and intrigue surrounding the night her husband died. There are facts about his death that don’t add up for Mia’s friend and sometimes-partner, Detective Charlie Carlson. Charlie has a thought that Mia’s husband, Scott wasn’t just speeding and had an accident. Maybe it’s more likely that he was run off the road on purpose. In his dealings with small businesses as their accountant, Scott was possibly helping these businesses cheat on their IRS audits. At least, that’s what it points to for Charlie and Mia as they begin to look through Scott’s paperwork. And on top of the suspicious paperwork, the condition of Scott’s body postmortem is doubly strange. Ms. Wiehl did a fantastic job weaving this plot and keeping me guessing through to the end.

There was one minor issue I took with the book and that was simply that the story felt a little crowded with it being a shorter novel. There was the story of the three boys committing a horrific crime and following that to a satisfactory conclusion. Then there was an even smaller sub-plot involving Mia’s son Gabe. Gabe has a friend who is having to live in a drafty, dirty garage with his out-of-work and sick mother. It would be an even better side story if I received more of a resolution concerning this down-and-out family. Instead, after a certain point we don’t hear anything more about this family or their situation. I’ll give the author the benefit of the doubt and believe that the story will be picked up in her next novel. There were a couple other story lines that could have been expounded on to give a fuller picture, but it didn’t deter me in desiring to see the book through to the end.

One aspect I wanted to make sure to mention is, I am very grateful that the book wasn’t filled with vulgarity or cursing, but also wasn’t “preachy” or “cheesy” either; something that Ms. Weihl accomplished with ease that other authors find too tricky to do successfully. Though the author is a Christian, and this book is marketed as a “Christian” novel I never felt like I was reading something overtly “religious”.

In case I haven’t been clear enough, if you enjoy a well-written mystery without having to worry about foul language or sexual content, this is certainly a book you’ll appreciate. It should be on your wish list immediately!



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Rachel Koehler

Wife to Drew Koehler, mother of three boys (yes, I said THREE) and one puppy. Grew up knowing the Lord and am so thankful to still be serving Jesus with all of my heart. God is so good!

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