Cold Light of Day

Reviewed by:

G. Connor Salter, Professional Writing alumnus from Taylor University, Upland, IN.


Cold Light of Day (Missing in Alaska #1)


Elizabeth Goddard




February 2023




331 pages


Autumn Long doesn’t want to lose her job. Unfortunately, some of the citizens in Shadow Gap, Alaska, would gladly see her career as police chief end. With less than 1,300 residents, it’s not hard to tell when public opinion is against her. When newcomer Grier Brenner rescues a woman from drowning and a lake search boat reveals a body, Shadow Gap may need Autumn more than over. Grier has a past he can’t share and doesn’t want to get involved in the investigation. When someone attacks Autumn’s father, his skills may make him the only one who can keep Autumn alive long enough to solve these crimes.

As in her previous Rocky Mountain Courage series, Goddard places characters in a wild or near-wild setting. She carefully sets up how dangerous Alaska can be—no regional sheriffs, small towns too small for state troopers, and the overhanging fact that many people come to Alaska to disappear… for reasons best not pried into. This makes for some fun sequences, and the harsh setting means she can ratchet up the tension in action sequences without Mission Impossible elements. When the big reveal comes, she gives enough details to make things truly surprising, better than the usual tropes.

Unfortunately, the writing style keeps these elements from having full impact. The opening scene is one of those classic “Bystander Sees What They Shouldn’t” chase scenes, but the Bystander isn’t described in a way that makes him interesting, and the chase feels generic. Things stay at that level throughout the book—cliché descriptions, characters thinking about each other in very repetitive language with no progress. Frequently, especially when it comes to how characters feel about each other, their inner monologue communicates everything when their actions could say it more effectively. Everything’s in place for a great story, but none of it comes alive.

An okay but only okay thriller.


Rating (1 to 5 stars):

3 out of 5 stars

Suggested Audience:

Fans of Christian romance thrillers.

Christian Impact:

Characters pray to God and have inner conversations about God’s justice and plans for their lives.

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Note: ECLA readers who enjoy this book may also enjoy these offerings:


Cold Light of Day (Missing in Alaska, #1)

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