Wildfire (Peril in the Park Book 3) by Gayla K Hiss

My Review

Gayla Hiss’s newest novel in the Peril in the Park Series, Wildfire, is a breath-taking story. I encountered this timely, riveting read as the decimating western fires dominate the news.

Rachael Woodston is a college professor and a wildfire researcher. She has developed a program to help predict the many variables, such as wind and speed, that can affect the fire’s course.

Dylan Veracruz is the leader of a firefighting crew. The last thing he or his team need is a seemingly hotshot college teacher getting in their way while they try to fight forest fires, and he definitely doesn’t need her trying to tell him how to do his job. He knows how fires work; he’s on the line working against them whenever and wherever they pop up within his region.

I related emotionally to all the firefighters and the wildfire researchers when repeated, intractable fires kept springing up in the beautiful Rocky Mountain area for no apparent reason.

I appreciated how the characters were at different stages in their Christian lives. Some of the characters, even having gone through some sad situations, are still close to God. Other characters, having gone through similar tragedies, struggle with their faith, feeling science provides more answers. As the plot moves along, so does their journey toward mature belief. The story isn’t preachy. Each person’s viewpoint seems a natural outgrowth of their circumstances and perceptions. I admired how they allowed their opinions to be challenged without rejecting faith outright.

Wildfires tension, twists and unique situations had me thoroughly engrossed, trying to guess the eventual outcome. A truly captivating story, delving deeply into the warrior mentality of the people whose calling is to place their own lives between ours and imminent fiery destruction.

I applaud the investigatory process, as it is very evident throughout the book. In addition, there are some fascinating facts and resources in the back of the book.

I received the book from the author. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

Publisher’s Summary

Will Rachael and Dylan escape the fire’s fury, or perish in the flames?

Sparks fly when wildfire researcher Rachael Woodston clashes with firefighter Dylan Veracruz in Rocky Mountain National Park. The June fire season has just begun, yet a long-standing drought has already turned the national park into a tinderbox. Rachael’s computer data indicates the fire Dylan’s crew is fighting is about to accelerate, but he doesn’t believe her—until the fire suddenly gets out of control and they have to evacuate.

Suspecting arson, Rachael and Dylan join forces in search of answers and soon discover that chasing fires isn’t all they have in common—they’re both survivors who’ve tragically lost loved ones. However, their difference of opinion about faith keeps them at arm’s length, despite a growing attraction. As the danger escalates, Rachael and Dylan soon find themselves in a firestorm they cannot escape. All seems lost until Rachael has a profound encounter that restores her faith and gives her hope. The close call also fuels her determination to stop the fiend behind the flames.

But can she and Dylan solve the mystery and extinguish their enemy before disaster strikes again?

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Avalanche (Peril in the Park Book 1) by Gayla K Hiss

avalanche

About the Book

When Park Ranger Jenny Snowfeather runs into Deputy Marshal Chase Matthews at her brother’s Fourth of July barbecue, she suspects there is more going on in Eagle Valley, WA than fireworks. After Chase confides that he believes the fugitive who killed his partner may be hiding out in the area, Jenny is skeptical at first. But when her peaceful town is besieged with a sudden crime spree, she realizes Chase’s theory may be true.

As the manhunt advances to the rugged backcountry of North Cascades National Park, Jenny is confronted with her past mistakes. But she soon discovers the greatest threat of all is losing her heart to Chase, who is obsessed with capturing the fugitive at all costs.

Risking everything to help Chase find the man who could kill them both, Jenny’s faith is put to the test. Like an avalanche waiting to happen, their path is fraught with danger. Will the enemy get away with murder? Will Jenny and Chase reach freedom and safety, or be buried alive? They must tread carefully. One step in the wrong direction could mean the difference between life and death.

My Review

Jennifer Snowfeather meets Chase Matthews at a Fourth of July picnic, and immediately her antenna goes up. Something doesn’t feel right to her. How does he know her name, and what about the gun he carries? Will she be able to discover why something seems off with Matthew?

Beautiful scenery exquisitely described, suspense that causes you to hold your breath as it plays out and danger around every corner are just of a sampling of the richness illustrated in this story.

I figure out the “whodunit” early on in most mysteries I read. However, with Avalanche I was so caught up in the story, I didn’t even try to guess! I was completely surprised by the villain.

The characters in this thriller will endear themselves to you. You will come to care for them, catching yourself wanting to warn them of imminent danger and feeling their pain.

Gayla K. Hiss is a new author; however, you would never guess it. She has done an excellent job of interweaving Biblical applications into her story without being preachy or belaboring a point.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Avalanche. There were a few scenes that were a little difficult to read due to my past history, but overall it was an exceptional book. I can’t wait to read the sequel!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.