Deadly Charm – book review

Why do I feel like I need to take a shower?

I have just read Deadly Charm by Claudia Mair Burney which is book three in the Amanda Bell Brown Mystery series – and I feel a little uncomfortable.

Dr. Amanda Bell Brown is confused about her feelings for her estranged husband. Her husband, Jazz, is also confused. An intervention from their families forces the pair back together and lights the fuse under a hotbed (no pun intended) of intense sexual emotion and desire.

Oh, no, that’s not what the book is about. It’s just a side story. The story is about a televangelist whose three year old son drowns in the bath leaving Dr Amanda Bell Brown and her amorous estranged husband with a strong suspicion that it was murder.

However, I haven’t counted so this is highly unscientific but, Amanda and Jazz’s maddening relationship and the descriptions of their largely unconsummated passion seems to take up at least 40% of the book.

The mystery of little Zeekie Thunder’s death is a great story and Claudia Mair Burney is undoubtedly a great writer. This is true Christian fiction with plenty of Godly truths brought out and plenty of reliance on God from the main characters. The story culminates in a well thought out and extremely well written  climactic series of events which are brilliantly told by this talented author. From that standpoint I can truly recommend this book. It does seem as if the author is openly mocking certain Christian movements at times, which disappoints a little, but it’s nothing extreme.

What bothers me is the amount of sex. Well, it’s not sex as such, it’s sexual talk and descriptions of both Dr Brown and Jazz’s feelings and desires but after the second time that I read how Dr Brown feels when seeing her husband in ‘all the fullness of his glory’ I began to feel a little dirty. It was almost like very very soft porn. It’s tastefully done and it is real, I cannot argue that. People have feelings. Different people have different feelings and some people are just more sexual than others. I understand that. The bible has a whole book dedicated to graphic descriptions of a man and woman’s longing for each other but that’s just one book out of sixty six. Deadly Charm seems like it has every sixth page dedicated to it.

So it comes down to this. If you want a straight medical mystery novel read something like Salty Like Blood. If you want something that does all that and also describes in depth the relationship between two married people, their separation and their overpowering emotional and physical feelings toward each other, then Deadly Charm is the book for you.

Me, I’m a little too prudish apparently and am going to take a shower.

Deadly Charm by Claudia Mair Burney is published by Howard Books. You can purchase it here: Deadly Charm (Amanda Bell Brown Mystery Series, Book 3)