A Merciful Death
by Kendra Elliot
Series: Mercy Kilpatrick #1
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
FBI special agent Mercy Kilpatrick has been waiting her whole life for disaster to strike. A prepper since childhood, Mercy grew up living off the land—and off the grid—in rural Eagle’s Nest, Oregon. Until a shocking tragedy tore her family apart and forced her to leave home. Now a predator known as the cave man is targeting the survivalists in her hometown, murdering them in their homes, stealing huge numbers of weapons, and creating federal suspicion of a possible domestic terrorism event. But the crime scene details are eerily familiar to an unsolved mystery from Mercy’s past.
Sent by the FBI to assist local law enforcement, Mercy returns to Eagle’s Nest to face the family who shunned her while maintaining the facade of a law-abiding citizen. There, she meets police chief Truman Daly, whose uncle was the cave man’s latest victim. He sees the survivalist side of her that she desperately tries to hide, but if she lets him get close enough to learn her secret, she might not survive the fallout…
The first novel in the Mercy Kilpatrick series, was a Prime book selection. An FBI agent returns to her hometown when someone murders doomsday preppers. Suspense, a little romance and a great mystery kept me flipping the pages.
The state of Oregon is home too many preppers or doomsday groups. Our protagonist, Mercy Kilpatrick grew up in the tight-knit prepper community of Eagle’s Nest, Oregon. A disagreement with her father, caused her to cut-ties with her family when she was eighteen.
Mercy knows the small-town and folks in Eagle’s Nest. Their dislike of outsiders and the government make her the perfect agent to investigate.
When a series of murders involving preppers occur, it raises alarms with the FBI. Could someone be planning a domestic terrorist act?
This was a clever story that pulled me in from the beginning. We have several story lines woven together, but the investigation was the primary focus. Twists and reveals kept me guessing until the end. Only after the killer was revealed did I see the foreshadowing and clues peppered throughout the story.
Threads involving Mercy, and her estranged family, were well developed, and added to the overall suspense. I found the prepper lifestyle fascinating. Insight into preppers and the inner workings of their community kept me engaged.
Mercy has secrets that the author slowly revealed allowing the reader to better understand her motives. The local sheriff, a newcomer by small-town standards assists in the investigation. Mercy’s partner and the Bend FBI field office added to the investigation and added believability. A low-key romance develops with the promise of things to come but was a minor thread compared to the first two.
A heart-pounding investigation and interesting characters made this an entertaining read. Elliot, a seasoned author pens books set in the Pacific Northwest. She brought the landscape, characters and small-town to life. I cannot wait to devour the next book, A Merciful Truth.
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