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    Action Packed

    What an accomplishment to switch from Amish Fiction to Romantic Suspense seamlessly. I totally was sucked into this story and the many twists and turns. It was like feeling your way through a maze to see the final outcome. It is interesting to read a cultural diverse book and also have a character in a wheelchair. Kudos for tackling this with such finesse. It is a story of finding forgiveness after betrayal and keeping secrets and how the characters grow as the story progresses. I found myself engrossed in this story with its continuous action and romantic tension. The characters were believable and I was especially interested in the lesser story of Natalie and Deacon. I look forward to reading more of this genre by Ms. Irvin as she is making her mark. I received a complimentary copy from CelebrateLit/publisher. The honest review and opinions are my own and were not required.
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    Fabulous suspense

    Wow! Just try to put this book down before you finish! The author has done an incredible job of detailing Laredo and the surrounding areas, giving one the feeling that you are in the midst of all the excitement. Try to imagine dealing with kidnapping, murder, arson as well as gun smuggling and hoping to come out of it all without further death or injury. Eli - a homicide detective, Gabby - a pastry chef, Deacon - a reporter, Natalie - a psychologist and various other personages make up the ragtag team of investigators that are attempting to unravel this scenario. Intertwined in all of this is the hurt and betrayal that will only be resolved through forgiveness. I must admit I sat on the edge of my seat wondering how this story would end. Was it possible that they would finally learn to trust the Lord enough to put everything in His hands? I received an ARC through NetGalley and CelebrateLit. The impressions and opinions are my own.
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    Guns, Corruption, and a Missing ATF Agent

    Laredo, Texas. A border town, like my native San Diego.  But not so much like my native San Diego.  (Actually, I'm from North County SD, but who's counting?)  I first heard of Laredo from my work in the supply chain field; Laredo is a major import/export location.  For one of my customers, all shipments to Mexico went through two cities, and Laredo was one of them.  It's a city that has been in my vocabulary and geographical knowledge for several years, but I didn't know much more about it until I read Over the Line. What I Liked About Over the Line Actually, getting the feel of Laredo was one of my favorite things about this book.  Authors who create their own fictional towns get to have a lot of fun with world-building, but there's something about a book that feels really authentic.  Now, I have never lived there.  But Kelly Irvin has, and while she creates some parts of the city to suit her needs (as she tells us in the afterword), it felt real to me! The suspense element: I was successfully "suspended."  Haha.  The theme of forgiveness was pretty powerful too, but I'll admit I got more out of "mom and dad's" story towards the end than out of Daniella and Eli's.  I enjoyed getting to know this "ragtag band" that sets out to save Daniella's brother and make a dent in the gunrunner business at the same time.  These different skill sets come together for a common goal, and even the journalists set aside (sometimes, haha!) their need to break a story to protect loved ones.  And a cop and a journalist who despise each other, working together? Recipe for something interesting. What I Didn't Like About Over the Line I can't really imagine any police officer allowing civilians to become that involved in the hands-on portion of an investigation unless you were in a situation where the government had completely fallen apart.  Although, getting journalists involved might make sense due to the corruption issues addressed here. Some of the characters in this story bugged me, too.  Eli keeps smoking in secret and just seems to avoid getting caught because he wants to please Daniella.  I don't know if that's a good reason to quit smoking - but lying about smoking?  He just rubbed me the wrong way.  He wants so badly for Daniella to forgive him, but he isn't willing to tell her the truth until the end.  Not much to build trust on.  More generally, I had some questions about these characters that weren't successfully answered. Would I Recommend Over the Line? Yes.  This story drew me into gun wars, corruption, and a search for truth.  I enjoyed it.  Will you? I received a review copy of this book; all opinions are my own.
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    Forgiveness front and center

    This novel had lots of action and danger among the pages. Dealing with gun smuggling across the border, U.S. to Mexico, made for some fast paced action. The mystery of who was behind it all added to the suspense. Gabriella, former DA turned restaurant chef, finds a dying man with bullet wounds right outside her restaurant as she’s leaving one late night. On his lips is the name of her brother, Jake, who’s in law enforcement. Thus begins a tangled, twisted story of how to locate him after he’s gone missing. Her ex-fiancé Eli, homicide detective, joins in the search despite their troubled past. Many characters come to light, law enforcement, relatives, journalists, and the shady criminal ones. There are murders, kidnappings, bombings and car chases. All the fun stuff. And romance for sure. Gabby had my mouth watering a time or two. Even among all that was going on she baked to relieve stress. I could almost taste her brownies and strawberry shortcake! The one thing I found taxing was the Spanish. Knowing it was very close to Mexico and even though a Spanish glossary was included in the front of the book, I got tired of flipping back and forth to find out what the words meant. Although they were sporadic in the writing, I know no Spanish but wanted to make sure I knew what was going on. I did appreciate the fact that the author spent lots of time living in Texas and was very familiar with Laredo where the story took place. She was able to incorporate her knowledge into the story and make it extremely real and believable. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through Celebrate Lit but was not required to write a review positive or otherwise.
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    OVER THE LINE

    OVER THE LINE ..by Kelly Irwin Gabriella , they warned her about dating a detective, Eli for four years. He wants forgiveness, she knew he came with baggage. She didn’t know the whole suitcase full would be dumped on her head. Waiting to follow her home from closing restaurant after midnight. A young kid comes out from nowhere, calling her name, then Jake her brother’s name, now falling from a gun shot wound. No one can get in touch with Jake he was working undercover, his place has been ramshacked. Tension from the first page, you get the scenario with the characters, what is really going on behind the scene. Is it more than the cartel, and stolen guns. The author has once again given. us a suspenseful plot, that readers won’t want to miss reading. Given ARC for my voluntary review and my honest opinion by Net Galley and Thomas Nelson.
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