As someone who started out as a reader, not a writer, there are so many incredible books and series, in addition to my own, that I would highly recommend. So when I tell people I like Christian murder mystery novels, they look at me like I'm crazy. Surely a book about murder couldn't possibly connect with Christian themes. All I can say is to check out Terri Blackstock and you'll be proven wrong.
So here are my top 5 I would recommend for anyone who wants to check out the Christian murder mystery genre Terri Blackstock specializes in.
1. The Restoration novels by Terri Blackstock
Don't let the rather bland series title fool you, this series is incredible. A family must survive when all the electricity and power in the world is lost. This series is much more concept based than most of her other books, but that's where it thrives. Blackstock combines the high concept idea of electromagnetic pulses destroying all technology with the daily struggles of a family experiencing the horrors of human nature and trying to grow in their faith. This series is so good but it's the last book, Dawn's light, that soars above the rest. I cannot say enough good things about this book that made me sob like a baby, laugh hysterically, subvert and exceed my expectations, and strengthen my faith, all the while providing me with a engaging murder mystery story.
2. The Newpoint 911 series by Terri Blackstock
A small town in Louisiana faces tragedy, scandal, and horror in this incredible series. What I love about Terri Blackstock is how realistic her characters are. Everyone in this series is complex and real as they come up against murderers, terrorists, and earnest mistakes. Blackstock pulls out all the stops in giving us a compelling story of everyday first responders risking everything.
3. Shadow in Serenity by Terri Blackstock
Before becoming a Christian murder mystery author, Blackstock was a successful steamy romance author for the secular market. Then God changed up those plans. In a return to her romance days, although without the steamy part, Blackstock gifts us a Christian romance novel about a master con artist pulling off his ultimate con, only to have his plans derailed by a small town, the only woman who doesn't fall for his con, and the God who has a different plan for his life.
4. If I Run series by Terri Blackstock
Getting back to the murder mystery, we have the if I run series. Blackstock chooses to take a big risk with this series and write it in first person point of view instead of the standard third person used by the general fiction market today. It honestly took some getting used to, but the series ultimately excels because of it. A young woman is framed and must go on the run. She is pursued by a private detective who wants revenge on the murderer of his childhood friend. But things don't line up for this relentless detective when the woman can't help but follow her convictions and be the helper God called her to be. She must decide, will she risk her life for people she barely knows or keep her head down.
5. The Cape Refuge series by Terri Blackstock
This series being the fifth on the list isn't saying anything at all against it. This series is amazing. Set in a rundown beach community, this series is centered around the daughters of an older couple found murdered in their own church. The daughters must wrestle with their pain while running their parent's halfway house full of potential suspects. There is a scene that will permanently be stuck in my head, I won't spoil it for you, but considering the countless number of books I've read, writing such a unique, vivid, and intense scene that sticks with me is an honor reserved only for the best.
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