Thursday, July 14, 2022

[Review] - 'Critical Alliance' by Elizabeth Goddard

Almost every other book I've read this summer is set in Montana or Wyoming. No, this wasn't intentional on my part. I guess it's how the stars are aligning for me. I didn't know Critical Alliance had a Montana setting until I read it. What can I say? I wanted to read this book solo based on the cover. I skimmed the blurb but somehow missed two Montana mentions.  

Critical Alliance (published by Revell) is a newly released mystery-thriller by Elizabeth Goddard. I'm not sure if I've read anything else by the author, but her name does sound familiar. She has written two other books, Present Danger and Deadly Target, in this series (dubbed Rocky Mountain Courage) and the Uncommon Justice series.

The male hero of this tale is Alex Knight, a Diplomatic Security Services Special Agent who has returned to his home state of Montana to relax from a haywire mission. Unfortunately, he doesn't have much time to decompress as he gets involved with Mackenzie Hanson, a cybersecurity expert wrapped up in a deadly espionage plot.

Final Thoughts

Critical Alliance is "almost" a standalone story. Each book in the Rocky Mountain Courage series centers on a character whose parent was killed in an "event" fifteen years ago. Despite not reading the first two books, I filled in the dots quickly for the backstory that links the series together.  

Now other readers are calling Critical Alliance either a romance-suspense or a suspenseful romance, but through my eyes, it's a mystery-thriller. Yes, there's a romance between the two leading characters, Alex and Mackenzie, but it's not the driving force of this story. The main gist is who's behind the evil wrongdoings and how the hero and heroine solve the mystery.

I read way too many books, and I'm not sure I've read anything else by Elizabeth Goddard. After reading Critical Alliance, I'll have to read her other novels sometime. From the get-go (otherwise known as Chapter One), I liked Goddard's writing style. The characters are well-developed, the descriptions are richly detailed, and there are twists and turns around every corner.

Overall, Critical Alliance is a fast-paced and cleverly-written edge-of-your-seat thriller that is difficult to put down until you've read the final word.

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