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Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd: #AToZChallenge #BookRecommendations

Virtue falls

We are in the last week of the A to Z Blogging Challenge, and I’m writing about thrillers of all stripes, mysteries, and crime novels for 26 days in April, based on the letters of the alphabet. All posts are linked here.

Since I’m writing up thriller and crime novel recommendations, I’m also giving away a 50 USD Amazon Gift card, to support reading, and to help my next novel THE BLUE BAR along on its journey.

Entries involve:



After Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey, I bring you Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd.

Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd: Book Description

Twenty-three years ago, Misty Banner was brutally slashed to death in her home in Virtue Falls, Washington. Her husband was convicted of the murder. Their four year old daughter Elizabeth witnessed the crime, but has no memory of the killing. Now, two decades later, Elizabeth is back in Virtue Falls. She soon discovers her father is innocent. The real killer is still out there. And her investigation has stirred dark and deadly resentments that could provoke in another bloody murder—her own—in this riveting novel from bestselling author Christina Dodd.

Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd: Excerpt

Rainbow stared at her as if she was speaking a foreign language. “Right. You’re like your father. I’ll get your dinner. I had the cook put an extra order of fries on the plate.”

Elizabeth wanted to ask what she meant about her father. Had Rainbow known him when they lived here?

But Elizabeth had learned, the hard way, never to talk about Charles, so instead she asked, “I asked for mashed potatoes. Didn’t I?”

“They’re coming, too. You need fattening up.”

Elizabeth knew for a fact she didn’t need fattening up. She was curvy. Very curvy. For a girl growing up in California, land of the svelte, being built like her was a disadvantage, not to mention it was hard to find clothes. If pants fit her hips, they were loose around her waist, and she hadn’t worn a button-up shirt since she was eleven and developed a C cup. Her aunt said she was built like her mom. Her uncle said she was built like an exotic dancer. But he didn’t realize she’d heard him, so she would acquit him of malice. Her uncle wasn’t mean; he was overworked and didn’t have time for his own kids, much less a niece who never talked much even after she recovered her power of speech.

Elizabeth realized she had a bit of a disconnect from the rest of the world caused by the knowledge that humanity could turn on her in an instant. She recognized the fact she sabotaged her own relationships, and sometimes she really tried to join in with the general populace and talk about the weather. She just never got it right. Not even with Garik.

Especially not with Garik.

Best not to think of Garik.

She bent her head to her reports again, and didn’t notice when one of the town’s elderly inhabitants held court in the corner, pointed her out to the tourists, and regaled them with the tale of how Elizabeth Banner had seen her father kill her mother with a pair of scissors.


About the author, Christina Dodd

Christina Dodd is the best-selling American author of suspense and regency historical romance. She is a recipient of the RITA Award.

Why pick up Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd

I picked up the book because of the premise, and stayed because of the romance. Yes, this is a romantic suspense and I was trying to read more of the genre, because my novels contain romance elements these days.

The pacing is excellent, and Dodd manages to balance the darkness of the crime with the moments of second-chance romance between the divorced couple who are still very much in love. Elizabeth is a dry, smart heroine, almost too try. She has hidden depths, though, even though she is quite incapable, most times, of showing great feeling.

The two main characters, Elizabeth and Garik work their way through the mystery, and towards each other, and I enjoyed following their journey. I’m going to buy the rest of the series, because this is the sort of not-too-gory-but-still-dark-book that I need for escape these days.

Have you read the book Virtue Falls by Christina Dodd? If yes, what did you think of it? What crime novels have you read lately ?

American psycho A to Z Challenge Rafflecopter giveaway Damyanti Biswas The Blue Bar

Through the month of April,  to celebrate the challenge and get some support for THE BLUE BAR, I’m  holding this giveaway:

Enter to WIN a 50 USD Amazon gift card for this


Entries are simple: click the RAFFLECOPTER link above, and follow the instructions. It calls for a Goodreads add, a subscription request, and a follow on Instagram.

If you enjoyed the post,  click on any or all of the following to stay updated:

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her literary crime thriller series, the Blue Mumbai, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Both The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon were published in 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • deepti menon says:

    A romance thriller… now those are rare, aren’t they? Must be a tightrope, trying to blend both elements in to create a taut story!

  • Ronel Janse van Vuuren says:

    I think I’ll skip this one — I’m definitely in the mood for vigilante justice and not in the mood for romance 🙂

    Ronel visiting for the A-Z Challenge My Languishing TBR: V

  • Jemima Pett says:

    ‘not-too-gory-but-still-dark-book’ is a great summary. Maybe I should….

  • Sonia Dogra says:

    Thank you for the recommendation. I haven’t read romance for some time now. A romance thriller might just pull me back into the genre.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      You’re welcome. A romantic suspense is always an easier escape read, I find.

  • cassmob says:

    I didn’t know about this author and the book sounds interesting. I like how you’ve given us a balance with each letter, between a snippet of storyline and your own perspective. Just as well A to Z is nearly finished so we’ll have more time for reading 😉

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      Glad that you like the posts, Pauleen. I’ve sure enjoyed yours, and am so pleased to find a new A 2Z blog friend. I’m sure I’ll hear from you as you read in the coming months.

  • Thank you. Drat you. Again.
    And, as an aside, I have loved that so many of the authors you have featured are women.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      lol I’m the most dratted girl at least in Singapore now, thanks to you Sue!

      I do read more women than men these days. I find women authors more nuanced, somehow.

    • Dodd is a pretty prolific author and I’ve definitely read a few of her books, but not this one. On this list it goes! You’re doing a great job of populating my TBRs.

  • I haven’t read a crime novel lately. Probably because there is too much of it in real life.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      I know what you mean. I write them for a living, but am thinking of branching out.