In 2015 I read A Cry from the Dust by Carrie Stuart Parks. Her third Gwen Marcey series instance When Death Draws Near, takes the forensic artist Gwen Marcey to a new assignment in Pikeville, Kentucky. She has to draw a serial rapist to be caught. One after another the witnesses disappear. A Pentecostal cult with snake handlers, fire blazers and ecstatic use of glossolalia as to take a literal application of the signs following believers as stated by Jesus Christ in Mark 16 set the macabre background for dead bodies popping up in the past 6 months. When Gwen is promised a large reward to infiltrate in the cult and identify its members, the thrill and pace in the book get a boost and keep you hooked to the end.
Can this vulnerable woman, facing a returned breast cancer, broke and divorced, solve this serial rapist, and multiple homicide cases on her own? Can she protect her teenage daughter Aynslee? Macey undergoes intense emotions, really needs God’s answers and help in anxious moments where she cannot trust anyone and seems to be left to her own devices. With poisonous snakes, simple folks turned into drunk political ambitious Halloween partygoers and devastating fires are the enemies to escape from, and death indeed draws near…it’s important to focus and gather the evidence to point the correct killer(s).
The characters are well-developed, the plot convincing and the lively (or deadly) details of snake handlers, this odd branch of Christianity and forensic art contribute to my well-spent hours of reading.
About the Author
Carrie Stuart Parks is an award-winning fine artist and internationally known forensic artist. She teaches forensic art courses to law enforcement professionals and is the author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing. Carrie began to write fiction while battling breast cancer and was mentored by New York Times bestselling author Frank Peretti. Now in remission, she continues to encourage other women struggling with cancer.