if i run book coverReviewed by Bethany Kelly

What happens when the people you thought were the good guys turn out to be bad? This is a conundrum that Casey Cox has to deal with in Terri Blackstock’s If I Run.

When Casey finds her best friend, Brent, dead in his house, she knows that she can’t go to the cops. She has no faith in the justice system after the death of her father; so instead, she goes home and packs her things. Knowing that her DNA is all over the crime scene, she flees town, deciding that living a life on the run is better than the alternative–being arrested.

Dylan Roberts, a friend of Brent’s and a war veteran suffering from PTSD, is hired to find Casey and bring her back to face the murder charges against her. However, as he searches for her, he is not sure that she is actually the one who killed Brent. Instead, he stumbles on to something that may point to someone he never would’ve expected as the murderer. This leads to the most difficult decision he has ever had to make: to bring Casey in, even if it puts her life at risk, or have faith in a complete stranger, and let her go.

This book is written from the perspectives of both Casey and Dylan. I have always enjoyed books in multiple viewpoints, and this one did not disappoint. Both Casey and Dylan are well-developed characters–they are not flat or lacking in any other way. I love that they both have traumatic pasts…ones that affect them both in similar ways, though they each handle their symptoms differently. I am drawn to books that focus on characters with PTSD and the way that the illness affects their lives. Blackstock definitely did her research when writing this book because both characters’ PTSD feels real.

I knew I’d like this book from the very beginning. As for the plot, I have read books and watched television shows with story lines that are similar in regards to the theme of corruption in places of power. This seems to be a popular subject as of late. However, Blackstock does a great job at integrating this into a story line that focuses on other subjects as well.

If I Run drew me in quickly and never let me go. I was a bit upset with the ending–not because it was bad, but because it left me with a huge cliffhanger.

All in all, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in the thriller/mystery genre. I am looking forward to the sequel, and wouldn’t be opposed to reading more novels written by Terri Blackstock.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Bethany Kelly is currently getting her MFA at Goddard College and has a BA in English. She is a writer, editor, and stay-at-home mother and wife who spends her spare time (when she has some) reading and cooking. Check out her website at www.bckwritingcorner.com.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Zondervan. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.