Lion Forge: Haphaven by Norm Harper, illustrated by Louie Joyce

Never Tell

Thankfully, Lisa Gardner chucked her career in food service after catching her hair on fire too many times, freeing her to become the author of 20-plus thrillers. Gardner's writing is ever-evolving as she adds new forms and actors to the mix. In the 10th installment of her Detective D.D. Warren series, Never Tell, Gardner gives equal time to a newly recurring character, survivor advocate and confidential informant Flora Dane, and to the suspect in the murder at hand, Evie Carter.

Evie is found standing over her husband with the smoking gun in hand. D.D. recognizes Evie as the grown version of the girl she investigated for shooting her father to death years earlier. When the new case hits the media, Flora shows up with shocking news--she recognizes the victim, Conrad Carter, from when she was kidnapped and held captive several years earlier (Find Her).

From the alternating and varied perspectives of these three fascinating and complex women, Gardner delves into marriage and family dynamics, power, perception and the lengths people will go to hide and protect their secrets. Her character work is beautifully done, and she deftly handles multiple narrators, timelines and plot arcs. Gardner strikes what feels like a perfect tone with 10 books of background to contend with, keeping the present fresh while providing necessary history. Never Tell is an excellent addition to the D.D. Warren series and proof it's never too late to draw in new fans. --Lauren O'Brien of Malcolm Avenue Review.