If you’ve been following the story of Special Agent Raleigh Harmon through her novels, written by Sibella Giorello, you’ll be glad to hear a new story is out! If you haven’t been following the story, each novel contains its own mystery for Harmon to solve. You can choose to start with the newest, The Stars Shine Bright, or start at the beginning and work your way through. I started somewhere in the middle, and still plan to go back and read the first few.
The Stars Shine Bright is set in Seattle, Washington. Harmon is in trouble for a desperate decision made during her last case. On temporary suspension and being investigated by the FBI’s version of Internal Affairs, Harmon accepts an undercover assignment knowing that if she does well, she’ll be able to keep her job. If not, it will be the end of her career.
Complicating matters are her mother’s involuntary commitment to a mental asylum and her fiancé’s insistence that she just give up the job, move home to Virginia, and let him take care of her. The choice may be taken out of Harmon’s hands; if not, it’s one she’ll have to make.
I really enjoyed reading this book. Giorello has a gift for creating amazing, if not eccentric, characters and putting them in interesting settings. I also got a kick out of Harmon’s mini-soapbox sermons, rants that randomly roamed through her mind as she dealt with difficult people and opposing viewpoints. Also woven throughout the story are Harmon’s deep thoughts about living honestly (something that’s hard to do when you’re working undercover) and receiving and responding to familial love.
Readers who enjoy great mysteries will love this book. I thank Thomas Nelson Publishers for sending a complimentary copy for this honest review.