Furious (Faith McMann #1) by T. R. Ragan


KK Conley Review

TRR Furious

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This is one of best novels I’ve read about human trafficking and kidnapping. The author has done her research and sprinkles in facts in bits so the story doesn’t become preachy.

The story is about Faith, a fourth grade teacher and mother, whose husband is murdered in front of her and her children taken. By a miracle, she survives having her throat slashed.

The point of view shifts among Faith searching for her children, a teenager held captive in the house where Faith’s daughter is locked up, and her son confined with young boys elsewhere.

Faith shifts from fourth grade teacher to hunter. Forced to attend anger management classes, she adopts the nickname Furious, and finds two allies in the class named Rage and Beast. These two are worldly and rough enough to give Faith the support and guidance that her parents and siblings can’t.

All these characters are well developed and credible. The book is well spaced and the writing good: The girl had just been branded, and it was the first time Miranda had seen her cry. The tattoo man, whom they called Fin, had done a number on Jean. He said it took longer than usual and he’d had to go deeper because she was so young. That way he wouldn’t have to do it all over again in a few years. All the girls got a swirly letter H tattooed on their upper arms at some point after being brought to the house. With all the fancy twirls it was hard to tell if it was a letter at all. Miranda didn’t believe Fin’s story about having to be so rough on Jean. Neither had she liked the way he’d looked at the girl while he was working.”

For me, the biggest disappointment in this novel is that it is the first in a trilogy, and while Faith/Furious manages to rescue several children, hers are not among them. The search continues in the second and third novels.

The descriptions of what happens to the captive girls are graphic and horrific. From the research I’ve done on human trafficking, I believe the scenes are realistic. Depending on the source you use, human trafficking and identity theft flip between the fastest growing crime  in the United States.

Booklist Online Review

Faith McMann, heroine of this gripping novel, is a Sacramento schoolteacher, wife, and mother who comes home just in time to witness her husband’s throat getting cut and her two children hauled away. The attempt on her life is botched—the killers were in a hurry—and as she recovers, she’s convinced the police are brushing her off. So she whacks a detective with his computer keyboard and gets sentenced to anger-management sessions. If this were a cookie-cutter thriller, the male hero would be tracking the killers with an automatic weapon and maybe a major babe beside him. But our hero is smarter than that, and her revenge is a product of relationships, not bullets. In classes, she meets other victims as angry as she is, and, together, in fine scenes of action and suspense, they seek explanations and vengeance as well as the children’s rescue, which takes them into a slimy world of human trafficking. Learn here about “lot lizards” and “kiddie strolls” on the way to a wild finale. Suspenseful and smart, in equal measure.

— Don Crinklaw

©Booklist Online

Amazon Description & Rating

Faith McMann comes home to a nightmare: her husband is killed and her son and daughter are taken. Although the intruders leave her for dead, she survives. Crippling grief and fear for her children make life unbearable. Until her anguish turns to anger…and she trades victimhood for vengeance.

Frustrated with the law’s efforts, she takes action to rescue her children—and wreaks havoc on the brutal criminals who tore them from her. With her family and newfound allies at her side, Faith descends into the hellish underworld of human trafficking, determined to make those who prey on the innocent pray for mercy.

The forces she’s up against have already proven that their ruthlessness knows no bounds. And there’s nothing they won’t do to turn Faith’s crusade into a suicide mission. But they’re about to learn that nothing is more dangerous than a mother fighting for her children—especially one who’s earned the nickname Furious.

4.5 out of 5.0 stars

Goodreads Rating

4.24 out of 5.00 stars

Author’s Description

(Same as Amazon Description)

About the Author

T.R. Ragan (Theresa Ragan) is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author. Her exciting Lizzy Gardner series: Abducted, Dead Weight, A Dark Mind, Obsessed, Almost Dead, and Evil Never Dies, has received tremendous praise. In August 2015 Evil Never Dies hit #7 on the Wall Street Journal Bestselling List. Since publishing in 2011, she has sold over two million books and has been mentioned in the Wall Street Journal, the L.A. TimesPC MagazineHuffington Post, and Publishers Weekly.

Theresa grew up in a family of five girls in Lafayette, California. An avid traveler, her wanderings have carried her to Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, China, Thailand, and Nepal, where she narrowly survived being chased by a killer elephant. Before devoting herself to writing fiction, she worked as a legal secretary for a large corporation. Theresa and her husband Joe have four children and live in Sacramento, California.

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Wall Street Journal Bestseller