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Deceit by Brandilyn Collins

Reviewed by Darcie Gudger

"With Deceit, Brandilyn Collins does what she does best – takes the reader for a heart pounding, knuckle whitening ride on a rollercoaster riddled with suspense."

Joanne Weeks has a problem. A big one. She knows Baxter Jackson is a murdering scumbag. Everyone else, including the chief of police, thinks Baxter Jackson deserves an even bigger pedestal than the one he’s currently posing on. Joanne isn’t one to give up. The dead woman, Linda Jackson, was her best friend. Her only hope in cracking Baxter’s lies is to track down a young woman who was a foster child at the time of Linda’s death.

A trail of water in her garage on a stormy night leaves Joanne feeling her life is in danger. Evidence indicates someone is following her. Someone interested in derailing her search for the young woman. Joanne is further convinced by those incidences that Baxter does have something to hide. And he’s not the only one practicing the fine art of deceit.

With Deceit, Brandilyn Collins does what she does best – takes the reader for a heart pounding, knuckle whitening ride on a rollercoaster riddled with suspense.

Joanne Weeks, in my opinion, is one of Brandilyn’s most down-to-earth and interesting characters. She has an odd profession (a skip tracer), is in her early 50s, and practices Jelly Belly Psychology.

The entire plot of the book revolves around the practice of deceit in different contexts. Some socially acceptable and even legal. Others not so much. Joanne uses deceit to garner information on her cases as she tries to locate people who have skipped out on their responsibilities. Law enforcement people use deceit to get the bad guys to spill the beans in interrogations. The bad guys use deceit to get what they want, or try to avoid punishment. So the question posed is whether or not deceit is ever okay in God’s eyes.

Collins leaves the question unanswered. Maybe there is no hard, fast answer. I’m hoping that open-ended question leaves room for more Joanne Weeks books. The raw reality of her character speaks to women of all ages who have a passion for justice and Jelly Bellies.


Darcie Gudger is a freelance writer currently working on a young adult novel while trying to solve all the mysteries of motherhood with her adopted son, Kyle. In her spare time, she coaches the 2A Colorado State Champion Sheridan High School colorguard, judged equipment for the Rocky Mountain Colorguard Association and sings for the Bear Valley church choir and worship team. An adventure-seeker who lives and writes in the shadow of the Rocky mountains, Darcie loves hiking, camping, cycling, photography and keeping her husband guessing. Visit Darcie online at her blog, Joy in the Litterbox.