Killer Nashville Book of the Day
Annabel Lee by Mike Nappa
Reviewed by Sharon Marchisello
Eleven-year-old Annabel Lee speaks English like a redneck but is actually well-educated and multi-lingual. She has no idea why her Uncle Truck, the mysterious man who raised her, has stashed her in a secret underground bunker with a man-killing German Shepherd who is a true soldier, fiercely loyal to his master. During her confinement, Annabel deciphers a journal written in German, which holds the key to why mad scientists and government agencies are sending soldiers and mercenaries to hunt her down and fight to the death to capture her.
Mike Nappa’s Annabel Lee (Revell) is a fast-paced thriller, alternating viewpoints between Annabel Lee, The Mute, and Trudi Coffey. The Mute is a former army sniper who owes his life to Annabel’s Uncle Truck. His mission is to find the girl and keep her safe—especially out of the hands of the diabolical “Dr. Smith”, who has led the search for her.
Private detective Trudi Coffey becomes involved when an important clue to Annabel Lee’s location is found in a book of the works of Edgar Allen Poe, a gift from her former husband and ex-business partner, Samuel Hill. Samuel Hill moonlights for the C.I.A., and once served in the army with Truck. Coffey and Hill are forced to pair up again to solve the riddle, rescue the girl, and stay alive in the process. Their sexual tension and past hurt feelings add interest and complexity to the story.
Annabel Lee is the first mystery in a new series featuring detectives Coffey and Hill, a pair that promises to entertain, solving crimes while bickering like Castle and Beckett. Author Mike Nappa, a former youth pastor, has had a successful career as an inspirational writer, but this is his first foray into the thriller genre. Annabel Lee contains a touch of a Christian theme (mainly portrayed through a character’s faith), but is in no way preachy or off-putting for an audience who does not read that genre. Thriller readers will not be disappointed.
Sharon Marchisello is the author of Going Home, a murder mystery inspired by her mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s. She has a Masters in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California and is a member of the Atlanta Chapter of Sisters in Crime. She lives in Peachtree City, GA, with her husband and cat, and does volunteer work for the Fayette Humane Society.
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