2016, 288p, Clean Contemporary Suspense
My Rating=4.5 Stars
Source: Received a copy from the publisher for an honest review
Catastrophe is looming over the Central Valley of California. The honeybees, vital to the economy of this agricultural epicenter, are dying at an unprecedented rate. The U.S. government is desperate for answers, and researchers at the University of California–Riverside are tasked with providing them. But when the professors assigned to the investigation seem to be systematically dying under mysterious circumstances, it becomes clear that there is something sinister at play. Following the murders of her mentors, it’s up to entomology student Tiana Lambrose to move forward with the research. Special Agent Stu Whiteleather, part of a team of FBI agents assigned to assist in the investigation, is immediately drawn to the lovely entomologist. Together, they discover a breed of bees engineered to be killing machines, which, despite Tiana’s expertise, are like nothing she’s seen before. The question is, who could possibly have the sophisticated technology to engineer these specialized insects and for what motive? The perpetrator will stop at nothing to keep investigators from finding the answer. As threats to Tiana’s life escalate, Stu must battle an unknown foe to protect the woman for whom he has come to care before she becomes the next victim.
This story takes place in California. Honeybees are dying and researchers are trying to figure out why. Tiana Lambrose is a student who has been helping with the research. When two professors are killed, she is able to head up the investigation, but she's not safe, either. One of the FBI agents assigned to the case, Stu Whiteleather, takes a personal interest in her safety. There are many people determined to find the mastermind behind this scheme and stop him or her once and for all.
I liked Stu and Tiana. They were attracted to each other but didn't have much time to get to know each other because things moved quickly. There wasn't a lot of romance, which was fine with me--they can get to know each other after her life is no longer in danger. I liked the interactions they had and could see the attraction.
I love the originality of a suspense novel that centers around bees and found this novel to be quite interesting! The pace was fast and lots of characters were introduced, but it wasn't hard to keep them all straight. There were characters that were obviously shady from the beginning but there were plenty of twists and turns along the way which kept me quickly turning pages to the final reveal. The ending seemed a bit abrupt (yet was still satisfying) and I had a few other minor issues along the way, but it was entertaining and clean, which are two big pluses for me!
About the Author:
Clair M. Poulson retired after twenty years in law enforcement. During his career he served in the U.S. Military Police Corps, the Utah Highway Patrol, and the Duchesne County Sheriff's Department, where he was first a deputy and the the county sheriff. He currently serves as a justice court judge for Duchesne County, a position he has held for nineteen years. His nearly forty-year career working in the criminal justice system has provided a wealth of material from which he draws in writing his books. Clair has served on numerous boards and committees over the years. Among them are the Utah Judicial Council, and FBI advisory board, the Peace Officer Standards and Training Council, the Utah Justice Court Board of Directors, and the Utah Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice. Other interests include activity in the LDS Church, assisting his oldest son in operating their grocery store, ranching with his oldest son and other family members, and raising registered Missouri Fox Trotter horses. Clair and his wife, Ruth, live in Duchesne and are the parents of five married children. They have twenty-two grandchildren.
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