I don't usually use the word “deadly” to describe a miracle, but that's exactly what author Bob Laurie does in the title of his book, A Deadly Miracle .
In this riveting novel, newly-retired Russian Federation operative Captain Ivan "Bull" Volkov is tasked with retrieving miracle drugs that have been stolen by his former comrade, Yuri Petrov. Meanwhile, 18-year-old Jace Hunter can't help but agree to assist his girlfriend, Sage Petrov - with whom he is deeply smitten - when she asks him along to deliver a mysterious package three hours away. The twenty-five hundred dollars that they'll be paid for the job doesn't hurt either. As one can imagine, there is a lot of excitement when the relevant parties all meet up.
I couldn't agree to review this book fast enough when I read the exciting description, and much of the story was a wild ride that had me wishing I had two seat belts and a passenger pedal. The tension was quite palpable, and I was on the edge of my seat with my stomach in knots for much of the reading. In the official book synopsis, the author noted, "Everyone's life is about to change, maybe even yours," and I really felt like my views on a few things did change. An unexpected angle introduced midway into the story heightened my senses as well.
Even though I found 95% of A Deadly Miracle to be quite entertaining, I couldn't muster much affection for many of the characters. Jace was a hard-headed, disrespectful, insolent youth led further astray by a wanton female, as hot-blooded teen boys are wont to do. Like many parents in fiction, his father was only too willing to forget his own reach for independence, while his mother was too coddling. There were many times that I wanted to get them together in a room and just thrash them all. Additionally, Sage got on every nerve I had and then some, so I found myself mentally slugging her a lot. I did respect Jace's brothers, Mason and Reid, but I also felt like Reid was written way too young to be sixteen. Their dog, Dakota, also warmed my heart. Bull, however, appealed to my love of action heroes - or, in this case, antiheroes - so his scenes were exceptionally bright spots for me.
Even though I've noted a few flaws in the story, I do want to give a giant thumbs-up to the author for including touches of faith in the book without being heavy handed about it. The Hunter family members mention God, prayer, and faith naturally, so the book doesn't read as preachy or in your face. I don't think it will turn off disbelieving readers, but I thought it should be mentioned, as its inclusion really warmed my heart.
After mulling everything over for a while, I decided to rate this exciting tale 3 out of 4 stars. Even though I disliked the ending, it was still logical and believable. A Deadly Miracle included foul language and quite a bit of violence, so readers who dislike those should give this tome a wide berth. There was also some physical affection between teens - grinding with clothing on, for instance - but no full-blown sex. I believe fans of drama and action, as well as people who enjoy themes of possession and games like capture the flag, will like this story.
And remember, the next time you pray for a miracle, make sure to add in that it not be deadly.