“Cardwell Christmas Crime Scene” is the latest in B.J. Daniel’s Cardwell family series, and the first I’ve read in this series. There is an abundance of characters, and the story follows multiple perspectives. Because of all the perspectives, it took me awhile to become invested in any of the characters. However, I really liked having the perspectives of particular characters (like the villains of the story) and eventually, I came to like the others as well. Some of the minor characters are really interesting, and I wished we had some more time with them.
There is a lot of potential in this story. There are some great plot points, and there is enough action to keep everything moving at a really good pace. But I would have liked it if some of the characters’ histories had been flushed out more. A brief past meeting between the two lead characters plays an important part in this story, but I felt like it was rushed over. I would have also loved some more backstory or insight to some of the history that centered on the intrigue part of the tale.
While I read this book as a standalone, I think I would have preferred to have read the other books in the series before getting to this one. There are many references to the previous books’ plots and characters, and I think having that background would give the story more depth. Saying that though, I am intrigued by the hints of the previous stories in this book, and want to go back to look at the others!
Dee Anne Justice spent most of her life on the run with her conman father. With her father in jail, she feels like her life is finally starting to settle. Until a mysterious, and possibly threatening, message is left in her apartment. The fear in her father’s eyes tells her this is not a threat to be taken lightly and she follows his request to seek out his family in Montana – a family DJ never knew she had.
DJ’s father has other motives for sending his daughter to Montana to seek refuge. An old debt means that private investigator Beau Tanner will do whatever it takes to protect DJ, despite her opposition. Even though she wants answers about her past, DJ isn’t keen on trusting anyone, ruggedly attractive cowboys included! But one missed gunshot changes everything…
From New York Times bestselling author B.J. Daniels come two thrilling tales of deadly secrets and lost love in the wilds of Montana
CARDWELL CHRISTMAS CRIME SCENE
Dee Anna Justice's world had turned upside down. She'd believed her convict father was her only living relative. Now Walter Justice, fearing for his daughter's safety, urges her to seek out her cousins in Montana. Calling in a decades-old debt, he also enlists Beau Tanner to protect her.
Trust doesn't come easy to DJ. But the warm, embracing family she finds at Cardwell Ranch softens her suspicious nature. Still, she resents the bodyguard her dad foists on her, despite their fiery attraction…
SECRET OF DEADMAN'S COULEE
When Sheriff Carter Jackson gets the call, he embarks on an all-out search for the woman who once shared his bed—and whose memory still torments him. Finding Eve alive only intensifies his yearning. But her shocking discovery in the Missouri badlands soon thrusts her into greater peril.
Eve came home to Montana to unearth her family's secrets. The dead body she found aboard a decades-old downed plane could be a vital clue. Except someone wants to keep the truth buried. Her best hope is the sensual lawman whose betrayal she can't forgive…even as reigniting passion tempts her to trust him one last time.