June 25th, 2022
Home | Log in!

On Top Shelf
THE SERPENT IN HEAVENTHE SERPENT IN HEAVEN
Fresh Pick
THE CARTOGRAPHERS
THE CARTOGRAPHERS

New Books This Week

Latest Articles

Video Book Club


Summer reads begin in June!

Slideshow image


Since your web browser does not support JavaScript, here is a non-JavaScript version of the image slideshow:

slideshow image
Two determined souls plumb the dark depths of the past in order to forge a brighter future--together.


slideshow image
"He could see her face. And she couldnt breathe"


slideshow image
Can a chance meeting open a grieving heart to love?


slideshow image
When the going gets tough, the tough get their hands dirty.


slideshow image
RUN. HIDE. SEEK.


slideshow image
Channeling Indiana Jones, author Kat Martin pairs a woman in search of her family's truth with a hard-hitting professional treasure hunter!


Sworn To Protect

Sworn To Protect, April 2010
Call Of Duty #2
by DiAnn Mills

Tyndale House Publishers
Featuring: Danika Morales; Alex North
400 pages
ISBN: 1414320515
EAN: 9781414320519
Kindle: B003M5IHHS
Paperback / e-Book
Add to Wish List


Purchase



". . . her writing has been compared to another outstanding Christian writer, Dee Henderson."

Fresh Fiction Review

Sworn To Protect
DiAnn Mills

Reviewed by Betty Cox
Posted May 31, 2010

Suspense | Inspirational Mystery

Border Patrol Agent Danika Morales lost her husband Toby two years ago. Unknown to Danika, Toby was an activist for undocumented citizens coming across the Texas border town of McAllen, but she only discovered this fact on the night he was murdered. She is still trying to find her husband's killer, but she has more problems than that. The Border Patrol Agency has a traitor in their midst and the finger of suspicion is pointed at both Danika and Toby's brother, Jacob.

Danika has found a good friend and confidante in Dr. Alex Price. When her life seems to be crumbling, and there may be a safety issue with her four-year-old daughter, Tiana, Alex seems to find a solution for everything.

SWORN TO PROTECT is replete with danger and treachery, with just the right amount of romance. DiAnn Mills is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and her writing has been compared to another outstanding Christian writer, Dee Henderson.

Learn more about Sworn To Protect

SUMMARY

Danika Morales has sworn to protect our borders. But that oath has come with a price.

Two years ago, her husband was shot and killed trying to help undocumented citizens—the very people Danika is responsible for deporting as a border patrol agent. His murder was never solved.

Now, a recent string of attacks and arrests leads Danika to believe her husband’s death wasn’t just a random act. It may be part of a larger conspiracy, and it appears that she’s the next target. When the Border Patrol discovers that one of their own is leaking top-secret information, Danika turns to the only person she can trust—a doctor at the local medical clinic. Together they search for answers before more innocent lives are destroyed.

Excerpt

Chapter 1

McAllen, Texas

The Rio Grande River separating Mexico and the US was not just murky. It was toxic. Danika Morales respected the river’s temperamentólazy and rushing, crystal and muddy, breath-taking and devastating. To many illegal immigrants, its flowing water signified hope and an opportunity for a better tomorrow, while others viewed the river crossing as a means of smuggling drugs or spreading terrorism. But for Danika, the depths meant death, and it didn’t discriminate among its victims. That was why she chose a Border Patrol badge and carried a gun.

Shortly after the 8:00 a.m. muster, Danika snatched up the keys to the Tahoe assigned to her for the next ten hours and checked out an M4. A hum of voices, most with Hispanic accents and clipped with occasional laughter, swirled around the station. A labyrinth of sights and sounds had succeeded in disorienting her. A daze. She took a sip of the steaming coffee in hopes no one saw how the day’s date affected her. Her hands shook. The twelfth of July. The second anniversary of Toby’s murder. She thought she could handle it better than this, but the raw ache still seared her heart.

“Tough day for me too,” Jacob whispered beside her. “We can get through this together.” The familiar tone of voice, as in many times before, nearly paralyzed her. Jacob sounded so much like his brother.

She stood shoulder to shoulder with her brother-in-law and glanced at his muscular frame and the silver streaks in his closely cropped hair, everything about him oddly different from Toby. Gone were the gentleness, patience, and the out-stretched arms of love.

“Thanks. But I’m all right.”

He frowned, a typical expression. “Well, I’m not, and you shouldn’t be either.” She was in no mood to rile him today. “I miss Toby every minute of the day, but we have to move on. He would have wanted it that way.”

“Not till his murderer is found.” Jacob’s jaw tightened. “I’m disappointed in you.”

Danika took another sip of the hot coffee, burning her tongue. Caustic words threatened to surface and add one more brick to the wall dividing them. “I want the killer found too. I’m committed to it. I think about him everyday and mourn for our daughter who will never know her daddy. But I choose not to spend my time harboring hate and vengeance.”

“You must not have really loved my brother.”

The words cut deep, and Jacob knew they would. No woman could have loved Toby like she did. “I refuse to be brow-beaten by you any more. Your hate is going to explode in your own backyard one day.” She stopped herself before she lit a match to his temper. Actually, she’d rather have been dropped in the bush for the next ten hours with a shotgun and a can of OFF than argue with him. But the time had come to distance herself from Jacob.

“Hey, Danika,” an agent called. “Do these belong to you?”

She turned to see wiry Felipe Chavez carrying a glass-filled vase with a huge bouquet of roses. They remembered. She swallowed a chunk of life. “Oh, guys, you didn’t have to do this.”

Felipe made his way toward her. The other agents hushed, then one of them started to clap. She smiled through the tears as he handed her the clear glass vase. The sweet fragrance no longer reminded her of death, but of life and her resolve to live each day in a way that commemorated Toby’s devotion to her and their little daughter. Perhaps this was what the two-year marker meant. She took the roses and studied the small crowd of agents. Good men, all of themóeven Jacob.

“We cared about what happened to Toby too,” Felipe said, with a grim smile. Danika brushed her finger around one of the delicate petals and formed her words. Memories had stalked her like a demon since last night. “Don’t know what to say except thank you. Toby was a soldier for his own cause, and he spent his life doing what he believed in. Just like all of us.”

One agent shook his head, frowned, and left the room. Far too many reasons for his disapproval raced through her mind. But Danika needed to put the ugliness behind her. She set the flowers on the long table in front of her. “Today is the second annive sary of Toby’s death. All of you have looked after me and my daughter, especially during holidays and special occasions. His death is why I’m more dedicated than ever to help protect the border.” She paused, sensing her emotions rushing into chaos. “I appreciate your remembering him and the sacrifice he made, especially since his beliefs were controversial.” Enough said. She took a deep breath, what many called a cleansing breath. “I brought doughnuts.”

And they were buttermilk, Toby’s favorite.

She glanced at Jacob, hoping to end the tension between them. How Barbara could stay married to him was beyond her comprehension. He treated her and their four kids like yesterday’s trash. Danika wound through the crowd of agents, greeting those who offered condolences and others who offered a good-morning. The Field Operations Supervisor, Agent Oden Herrera , stood in front of the flagsóthe US, Homeland Security, and the Border Patrol. Pushing the emotions of regret and grief about Toby aside, she captured the supervisor’s attention.

“During the muster you said intel had picked up a cocaine drop last night?”

Herrera walked to a wall map and pointed. “Like I said earlier. Arrested seven men and two women right along here, your area. A kid had a small bag of cocaine on him. Most likely a deterrent. The drug smuggler either hid it before being apprehended, or he’s out there waiting for someone to pick him up. Dogs have been out there most of the night, but Barnett and Fire-Eater are headed that way in a few minutes.”

Danika finished her coffee and made her way into the stifling heat to Jon Barnett’s truck. As Fire-Eater’s handler, he had everyone’s admiration, and the Belgian sheepdog had a reputation of being the best of the K-9s. Barnett snapped on the dog’s leash and waved.

“I hear we’re working the same area today.” She refrained from patting Fire- Eater. Some days he wasn’t people friendly. After seeing the dog in action a few times when he’d found drug runners, she sometimes felt sorry for those he brought down.

Barnett grinned and wiped the sweat already beading on his face. “He’s a good dog, Morales. Just needs a little help with his people skills.” He laughed, his freckles deepening in the intense sun. “And he’s great with the wife and kids. Like another member of the family.” He pulled out his keys. “Do you want to talk? We have a few minutes.”

All she really wanted was for the day to be over. Talking increased the chances of liquid emotionówhich was more lethal than the river flowing between the US and Mexico. “No, thanks. I’m fine.”

“Do you need to talk?”

“It’s been two years.” Therapeutic or not, she would not open up, even to a sweet guy like Barnett. She’d spent hours building a reputation as a tough agent, and she wasn’t about to take a nose dive now.

“Right, and the sooner you admit that today has crept up on you worse than a case of food poisoning, the better you’ll feel.”

She had to agree. “Have you turned psychologist?”

“Fire-Eater and five kids taught me all I know.”

“I had a dog when I was a kid,” she said, looking for any subject except Toby.

“Gentle, sensed my moods, smart. My best friend. Sure missed him when he was gone.” Danika blinked back a tear, despising her reaction. She stared at Fire-Eater rather than look into Barnett’s face.

“I bet he slept at the foot of your bed.” Fire-Eater climbed into the backseat of the double-cab truck.

“Sometimes in it. We even shared meals. I didn’t like meat, and he’d eat it for me.”

“Who’s your best friend now?”

She swallowed the ever-increasing lump in her throat. “Toby’s gone, and I have a tough time in church.”

“Confession is a beginning. Any family?”

“Toby’s family has been good to me.” Never mind Jacob. “My folks never approved of my marriage.” She sucked in a breath. It hissed like the poisonous snakes she feared. “Well-meaning friends do this to me.”

“Do you feel any better?”

Sneak. “Yeah, thanks, doc. You--”

Fire-Eater barked. No doubt anxious to get moving. The animal and Jacob had similar personalities, but today she’d rather be with the dog.

Videos


What do you think about this review?

Comments

No comments posted.

Registered users may leave comments.
Log in or register now!

 

 

 

© 2003-2022 off-the-edge.net  all rights reserved Privacy Policy