Traces of Guilt (An Evie Blackwell Cold Case)

by Dee Henderson

Paperback, 2016



Call number



Bethany House Publishers (2016), Edition: Complete Numbers Starting with 1, 1st Ed, 400 pages

Original publication date



Fiction. Romance. Suspense. State Police Detective Evie Blackwell is launching a new task force dedicated to reexamining unsolved crimes in Illinois. While looking at old evidence for a couple of missing-persons cases in Carin County, she pulls out a few tenuous leads??with startling implicatio


Original language


Physical description

400 p.; 8.27 inches


0764218867 / 9780764218866

User reviews

LibraryThing member lamb521
Title: Traces of Guilt (An Evie Blackwell Cold Case)
Author: Dee Henderson
Pages: 400
Year: 2016
Publisher: Bethany
My rating is 5+ stars.
In Carin, Illinois there lurks in the past secrets that cost people their lives that no one ever found about till now. In comes Evie Blackwell who is tasked with
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solving two cold cases: one of a child abducted and never found the other, the other the disappearance of a family of three. What is about to be uncovered will surprise the local town folk, but none more than the Thane family. Their father was the sheriff and now the older brother holds that position. The middle son is a recently returned soldier and the youngest son owns some local businesses.
I looked forward to reading Dee’s newest novel since I spotted it coming soon some time back on a bookstore site. The novel for me was well worth the wait as it was filled with suspense along with hope-filled romance. Each of the three brothers is a bachelor, and the family is a tight faith-filled family which I really thought was inspiring. I would guess that few could understand what men or woman deal with whether they have been in the service or are local sheriff’s, etc. The author does a great job of showing how a family comes together to shoulder burdens, pray, get together for fun and more.
I enjoyed how they knew each other’s strengths and weaknesses and didn’t try to change each other. The family lived close to each other to be of help yet far enough away to have privacy. The tale of suspense was heightened throughout the book, and the feelings of sadness could almost be felt coming off the pages at different times of the tale. Dee Henderson kept me guessing till the very end of the book as to how one of the cases would come to conclusion; it was brilliant!
I hope the author plans to bring the character Evie Blackwell back in a future novel perhaps even in the same place as Carin, Illinois. The ending sure was left open in each of the Thane brother’s personal lives to be able to revisit this family in the future. However, if the author has some other suspense-filled story to share with readers, I will be reading it for sure! I hope you enjoy the novel as much as I did as it truly is a story to get glued to for hours!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255. “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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LibraryThing member JoyAnne
Another Dee Henderson novel that left me wondering how they could get any better. Loved the steady pace, the earthy characters both new and those from previous books. Especially interesting to me is the crime solving procedures, here Detective Evie Blackwell looks into two cold cases and her
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investigation is engaging. There's light romance which is good but sometimes I wish there was just plain old investigating, makes it more suspenseful. I felt like some of the areas could be picked up in a future novel. Overall, it's well worth the read.

I received a copy of this book free from Bethany House Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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LibraryThing member caroljels
Just finished Dee Henderson's "Traces of Guilt". It's a hard to put down and get anything else done kind of book. For Dee Henderson fans, you won't want to miss this one. It's written more in her recent style of writing rather than the O'Malley series (which I love), and it's one of the best of
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recent style, imo. I read that Evie Blackwell, main character, will probably be mentioned in some future books, and that's definitely a good thing because I want to know more about her and her future. Some of the characters in "Traces of Guilt" are familiar if you've read other Dee Henderson books.
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LibraryThing member JCGirl
The latest book from Dee Henderson, as usual, keeps you intrigued until the last page. I can't wait for the next one. She has a way of making her characters come alive, and you want to know everything about them. Putting mystery, complication and romance into the story makes her one the best
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Christian writers of today.
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LibraryThing member Virginia51
Fantastic read. Great start to a new series. I really look forward to reading more Evie Blackwell cold case was great to meet the Thane brothers. Each brother has a bit of a diffeent personality. All would be nice to know. It will be nice to learn more about Evie and the brothers. I
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received this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest opinion.
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LibraryThing member vintagebeckie
I have kind of been on a Dee Henderson kick lately. She has filled my morning walks with interesting characters, excellent writing and intriguing plots. In Traces of Guilt, Henderson introduces readers to new characters while including old favorites from previous books. This book is more mystery
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than suspense, since the crimes are cold cases, having taken place years before the present action. As part of a new task force put together by Governor-elect Bliss, Evie Blackwell uses vacation time to get a headstart on the investigations. Rural Carin County has not one, but three for her to puzzle over. Joining her in the investigation are friend Ann Falcon and Sheriff Gabriel Thane. All aspects of the cases are explored including likely and unlikely motives and suspects.

Traces of Guilt is not a fast-paced suspense novel. It is more of a methodical uncovering of layers involved with missing persons cases. Through intuition and professional expertise, the investigators get to the bottom of the mysteries. I liked this aspect of the book — a plausible look at real-life police work. Characters do spend a lot of time thinking (and in some cases over-thinking) relationships — their own and others. I found that a bit tedious, especially since I was listening to the book. That’s a disadvantage in an audiobook. It’s harder to skim over the boring parts.😉 Fortunately, I found those to be few. I also liked Evie Blackwell and Gabriel Thane. Evie is much less high maintenance than some of Henderson’s female characters and Gabriel, while solicitous, is more believable in his actions than the long-suffering males in some of Henderson’s novels.

This audiobook was a good choice for my morning exercise and I look forward to future books in the series.


Audience: adults.
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LibraryThing member Sandra_Berglund
inspirational romantic suspense. kept me up all night. from the moment I started reading it I knew I will not stop until im done. I am a big fan of Dee Henderson and her writing. the moment you get into reading it you cant literally stop. you want to read just one more chapter. the only thing I
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didn't like about this book is that it was to short. :)

would definitely recommend it to all of my friends
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LibraryThing member jfe16
Vacationing Illinois State Police Detective Evie Blackwell tackles a cold case as part of a trial run for the new task force the governor will be establishing. The focus will be on unsolved crimes throughout the state; here Evie will work with the sheriff’s department, seeking answers to the
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whereabouts of a missing deputy sheriff and his entire family and, in an unrelated case, a vacationing six-year-old girl who disappears when the family passes through town.

Since these are cold cases, there is not the immediacy of solving a just-occurred crime, but the sense of urgency transfers to Evie’s desire to solve the two cases before she must end her vacation and return to her job. Will a new set of eyes on the evidence lead to the answers or will the truth remain hidden?

The large cast of well-drawn characters offer readers insights into Carin County and the people who live there, especially the Thane brothers and their families. Plot twists and unexpected reveals build the suspense as they unravel the cold cases with unforeseen results and keep those pages turning. As with many cases confronting police officers, there are dark and unsettling crimes depicted in this narrative; the author does not attempt to sugar-coat them. However, strength, resolve, and faith play large roles in these tragic events.

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LibraryThing member Carol420
Traces of Guilt by Dee Henderson
Evie Blackwell Cold Case series Book #1

From The Book:
Evie Blackwell loves her life as an Illinois State Police detective . . . mostly. She's very skilled at investigations and has steadily moved up through the ranks. She would like to find Mr. Right, but she
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has a hard time imagining how marriage could work, considering the demands of her job.

Gabriel Thane is a lifetime resident of Carin County and now its sheriff, a job he loves. Gabe is committed to upholding the law and cares deeply for the residents he's sworn to protect. He too would like to find a lifetime companion, a marriage like his parents have.

When Evie arrives in Carin, Illinois, it's to help launch a new task force dedicated to reexamining unsolved crimes across the state. Spearheading this trial run, Evie will work with the sheriff's department on a couple of its most troubling missing-persons cases. As she reexamines old evidence to pull out a few tenuous new leads, she unearths a surprising connection . . . possibly to a third cold case. Evie's determined to solve the cases before she leaves Carin County, and Sheriff Thane, along with his family, will be the key to those answers.

My Thoughts:
This is a new author for me and a new series. The cold cases are very interesting and the main reason why I picked this book up to begin with. There is just too much side story involving Evie’s old and new romances. I am not a fan of romances so I found this annoying right off the bat. There was no real action to the story and I became rather bored just waiting for something to please happen. The good parts were…as I said…the cold cases and two wonderful dogs. It was too bad there wasn’t more time and effort devoted to those things. It isn't a bad book or an unreadable book...just not enough of the things that are interesting to me. I’m not sure if I will tackle another book by this author.
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LibraryThing member DebbieRoesch
Excellent. Couldn't put down. Read it in two days.
LibraryThing member JenniferRobb
I've read the first two books in the Atlee Pine series and many books by this author. I am wondering if he drew up the Finding Mercy story first and then had to figure out where to place the clues within the context of other stories containing Atlee. At least she has made a bit more progress toward
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finding her sister.

Atlee's leave of absence from her job seems a bit unrealistic in its open-endedness (along with Carol Blum's).

It was nice to see another of Baldacci's series characters show up. I can't remember that happening before--though this book indicates that Atlee Pine and John Puller Jr. worked together once before so perhaps it did and I just don't remember it (or haven't read that book yet).
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LibraryThing member cbcmedia
Evie Blackwell is a detective who is going to start on a State-wide cold case task force. Her friend, Ann, a semi-retired detective thought she’d be perfect for this job. She takes a two week vacation and heads to Carin County and is going to try and solve two cold cases. The sheriff, Gabriel
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Thane, his two brothers, his mom and dad, all end up involved in one way or another along with several other people. Enough about the characters, you can read that yourself on the back cover.

This book kept my interest. I found it hard to put down and I couldn’t figure out the mystery, I like that in a book. The characters were real and likable, and the plot was good enough to keep me guessing. There is a second book in this series and I’m interested to start reading it to see how a few things work out.

I like Dee Henderson’s books and this one did not disappoint. Thanks for another great read!
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