Book Review | Lone Witness

Lone Witness
Atlanta Justice #2
Rachel Dylan

Bethany House Publishers | May 1, 2018
Christian Fiction, Action, Legal Thriller

{GoodReads}
When prosecutor Sophie Dawson is the lone witness to a gang-related double homicide, her world is turned upside down. Private security guard Cooper Knight is hired to protect Sophie from the gang, but she's more concerned about prosecuting her latest case than the threat to her life. Sophie wants to stand for what's right, but can Cooper keep her safe?


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WARNING: Possible Spoilers
I was provided a copy of this novel by the publishers in exchange for my honest review.

{The Basics}
Sophie Dawson loves her work as a prosecutor for Fulton County, Georgia.  But when she is the one and only witness to a cold-blooded, double murder late one evening, she's thrown onto the witness stand---an entirely different position than one she is used to.  She has to set aside her prosecutor's shoes and appeal to the jury as a civilian witness, much more difficult than she at first thought.  And to top it off, she now has a target on her back---but not just one, TWO. 

Cooper Knight owns a partnership in a security business.  Sophie's father hires him to protect her, discreetly at first, but that doesn't last long as he soon becomes her bodyguard, 24/7.  And neither of them can help the connection they feel in each other's company.  They have two completely different views of what they wish their future to look like, so can they put aside those differences and see where a relationship might take them?

{Spiritual Content}
This is a novel written in the Christian fiction genre.  In my opinion, it is nowhere near over-the-top "religious" stuff like many books out there.  This one keeps it sweet and simple.  The characters obviously rely on God and their faith through the trials and fears they face.  They pray to Him often, and attend church services.

{Violence}
Double homicide at a gas station: a clerk is gunned down inside the store, as well as a young woman in the parking lot.  They are both shot---one in the head, lots of blood and screaming.

A man is caught lurking outside Sophie's house.  Cooper punches him, but is tasered in the process.  Threatening letters are sent to Sophie in an effort to scare her.  There's a drive-by shooting; Cooper is nicked by a bullet in the arm.  We learn Sophie has suffered panic attacks in the past.

A woman is attacked at her car---the assailant grabs her and attempts to bash her head into the car's hood multiple times.  He is interrupted and she comes away with a black eye and a mild concussion.  A man supposedly commits suicide before his trial (but it's learned later he was murdered).

A car bomb explodes in a church's parking lot, obviously intended for a particular person or two.  Other than a couple cuts, cracked rib, and being knocked out from the explosion, no other major injuries.  A man kills a woman with a point-blank shot to the head.

A defense attorney quits her job as the lawyer for a dangerous gang leader.  He threatens that no one ever leaves him, nearly chokes her (but thinks better of it), and swears she'll regret her decision. 

A woman pulls a gun as incentive for her captive to obey her orders, and is later shot in the leg.  An armed man enters a woman's home, she escapes him, but he chases her down throwing her on the ground.  He punches her in the gut and slaps her face, before he is shot and killed by Cooper.

{Language // Alcohol & Drugs}
A gang leader "started dropping the f-bomb" <-- that is literally what the book says.  No language is used or spelled out, though it may be implied by the use of "he cursed" or "swore aloud," etc. 

Cooper is unknowingly drugged by a sedative in his Coke.

{Romantic Content}
Cooper and Sophie cannot deny the attraction they feel for one another.  I liked seeing how their relationship grew.  They gave each other space when necessary and were supportive of one another.  But they couldn't overcome the connection.  :]  They kiss a few times and embrace for the sake of comfort.

{Conclusion}
As the second in the Atlanta Justice series, I really enjoyed this action novel.  I like reading about the aspects of the law and what the different positions consist of.  [SPOILER] Though justice does not always prevail, no matter how well you performed in the witness seat, there are still people fighting for it and for those whose loved ones were impacted from whatever crime.

The characters were so very relate-able and the relationships sweet.  I really enjoyed reading about Sophie and her personality.  She knew what she believed and she was willing to stand for it, no matter what it took.  Cooper had a rough childhood and was held back by fear.  It was sweet to see the encouragement and support Sophie, as well as his buddies in the security business, give to him.  He learns he can overcome and the rewards are priceless.

A great novel!  I would certainly recommend to all who enjoy the legal thrillers filled with murder and mystery and action.  However, please NOTE: this is the sequel to a series.  Read the first!

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Ages 16+

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To each is given a bag of tools,
A shapeless mass, and a book of rules,
And each must make, ere life is flown,
A stumbling block or a stepping stone.
-Anonymous-