Title: In the Belly of Jonah
Author: Sandra Brannan
Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press
Publication Date: September 1, 2010
Paperback: 288 pages
Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Suspense
I do not want to give anything away in Sandra Brannan’s first Liv Bergen Mystery. If anyone would like to learn more about the book please check out the publisher’s website. I shall be reviewing the second book, Lot’s Return to Sodom this week.
In the Belly of Jonah by Sandra Brannan is her expertly written debut novel and the first in her Liv Bergen Mystery series. Liv Bergen owns a lime mining company outside of Fort Collins, Colorado, and is quickly drawn into the Venus De Milo serial killer case when one of her summer employees, Colorado State University student Jill Brannigan, is discovered murdered on the banks of Horsetooth Reservoir. Detective Doug Brandt knows he is in over his head and against his chief’s wishes, he welcomes in the FBI. Special Agent Steeter Pierce and BAU profiler Special Agent Lisa Henry, a college mate of Liv’s, use Liv’s home as their command center, further drawing Liv into the hunt to find the “de Milo” murderer. Brannan has crafted an incredibly intense suspense thriller about a series of very gruesome murders that are being investigated by the FBI along with the young, but intuitive Bergen. The Venus de Milo Killer is named for the pattern of violence and the specific manner in which the killer prepares the victims, and while the graphic nature of the murders may be too much for some readers, Brannan uses it to run the reader through a sensory experience unlike that of most other novels, bringing a deeper meaning into the storyline. In the Belly of Jonah is told in alternating perspectives, primarily through Liv, the “de Milo” murderer, and Pierce. Brannan’s combination of suspense, mystery, gruesome murders, and narrative adds her to the top of my list for psychological mystery thrillers and I have already begun the second book in the series, Lot’s Return to Sodom. I recommend In the Belly of Jonah to adult readers looking for a new and unique style of suspense writing that is sure to draw readers from whatever they have set out to do and occupy a few intense hours of reading. Sandra Brannan is an author to keep a close eye on, if her debut novel is this outstanding; I cannot wait to see how her books develop in the next few years.
For twenty-five years, Sam Brannan has run a division in the mining company that was founded by her grandfather, father, and uncle in 1944. She lives with her family in Rapid City, South Dakota. In the Belly of Jonah is her first novel.
To learn more about author Sandra Brannan or her books, please visit her website.
I received a complimentary copy of In the Belly of Johan by Sandra Brannan from JKS Communications to offer my honest review of the book. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of aforementioned book.