Deeper Water by Robert Whitlow
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Deeper Water by Robert Whitlow is book one of the Tides of Truth series. This is the first Whitlow book I've read and I came across it as a free kindle download via the Vessel Project.
Tammy Lynn Taylor is from a devout Christian family with some rather strict beliefs: females wear dresses and skirts below the knee, no makeup except on rare and special occasions, children must consult their parents for decisions, and the Sabbath is strictly reserved for resting. She was homeschooled until high school when she was allowed to attend the public high school and play sports while wearing very modest sports uniforms. As a second or third year law student, she is preparing for an internship of sorts.
Moses Jones lives in a shack on the Ogeechee River. When he goes fishing, he sees faces in the water. He wonders why they haunt him so and when they will pull him under with them.
Normally I don’t care for a female main character, but Robert Whitlow has done an excellent job of not only creating memorable characters but also mystery and suspense. I became so emotionally wrapped up in the story that I wanted to sit down and talk to some of the characters and I cried through the last two chapters. Tammy, though in her second or third year of college, came across as much younger, but I’m sure that is due to her family’s beliefs and convictions and the more I read the more I could relate. While in some ways she comes across as shy and timid, at others, especially when her convictions are on the line, she has steadfast confidence. Though I find it hard to believe that a law firm would manage to take on 3 such religious summer clerks, I am not surprised that two rather different Christian men (Zach and Vince) would find her attractive.
Moses and Tammy’s paths cross when Judge Cannon assigns each summer clerk with a misdemeanor case. Moses Jones is accused of twenty-four counts of trespassing. As she researches the charges, she discovers connections between Moses Jones and one of the partners of the law firm, Joe Carpenter and an unsolved missing child case. Zach Mays, her supervising lawyer, cautions against digging any deeper than the relevant charges. Vince Colbert, a fellow summer clerk, passes along any info he stumbles across, including warning her that he has overheard the partners talking about her and her case. Tammy believes that God put her in that law firm with that case to uncover the unresolved death of a little girl from years ago and to tie up the loose ends, even if it means the end of her career and possibly her life.
This is one of the few Christian fiction books I have read that was not overly preachy except what fit each of the characters. While the main character is a young woman and two men are attracted to her, romance is kept as a shadow in the background. Whitlow’s knack for mystery and suspense are fantastic—one of the best Christian mystery/suspense I have ever read. I will definitely be reading the next one in this series and will look for more books by Robert Whitlow.
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