Member Reviews

Despite the fact that I enjoyed the first two books in this series, I decided this book wasn’t for me at the 25% mark and did not finish. The main character is tired and discouraged in the first few chapters and it rubbed off on me. Then the action builds and there is a lot of detailed description of various weapons, multiple murders (albeit of “bad guys”) and intense reminders of the depravity of sex trafficking. Not for me and I’d have a hard time recommending this one. Thanks to NetGalley and Thomas Nelson for an early copy to read and review; all opinions are my own.

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This is an action packed, fast paced read, compelling read. Book 3 in this series with Murphy Shepherd and his much loved trustworthy dog Gunner.
The author is very skilled and as the reader I could feel the myself right there in the midst of this dramatic, powerful, intense read.
Sex trafficking is evil, Murphy and his mentor Bones are rescuing as many young boys and girls as they can, putting their own lives at risk. As with any book from Charles Martin there is always another story within and this is the story of Bones’s estranged brother, their horrendous, brutal childhood, and the stark difference in in how the have both turned out
In among the evil in this book there is a tremendous amount of hope, strong friendships, sacrifice, faith and love.
Thanks to Net Galley and Thomas Nelson—Fiction for an ARC of this book in exchange for a review.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book courtesy of NetGalley and Thomas Nelson Publishers. The honest opinions expressed here are completely my own.
What a heart-stopping, heart-wrenching conclusion to this powerhouse trilogy of action-adventure dramas like no other series I've ever read.
The mixture of genres in these books still stuns me.......a blend of the brutal, non-stop action you'd encounter in a Jack Reacher book combined with the emotion, humanity and beating warm heart of a Nicholas Sparks novel.
All three of these novels, starting with "The Water Keeper" and "The Letter Keeper" present a timeless, virtually biblical clash between unfathomable evil and the fundamental human spirit of goodness. And Charles Martin's presentation of both the very best and very worst of humanity is pure, raw, and unflinching in the depiction of horrific depravity and those who survive it......and the champions of those survivors.
The champion I speak of here is Murphy Shepherd, survivor of his own backstory of heartbreak and brutality. He's a relentless rescuer of the victims of worldwide human trafficking and in his rescues, shows no mercy whatsoever to those who enslave, abuse and exploit innocent women and children.
Unlike other series, I'd strongly recommend you start these books from the beginning with "The Water Keeper: in order to fully immerse yourself into the eye-popping revelations and final showdowns that unfold in "The Record Keeper". And after the previous two books, you'll have come to know and deeply love the supporting characters now surrounding Murphy Shepherd from his previous adventures.
I don't know when I've ever come across a series that takes you on a such a jarring, back-and-forth voyage between adrenalin-pumping, violent action and the pathos of enduring love, faith, kindness and friendship. Charles Martin set a very high bar here for any other author who'd attempt to duplicate the experience of this one-a-kind trilogy. Depending on what part of the books you read, you could end up either raising your fist in triumph or crying your eyes out. Or maybe both.
A five star 'must read ASAP' all the way.

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I admit it. I had a severe book hangover with this book, as I do with all of Charles Martin's books. This man is a genius and the conclusion to this trilogy was no different.

This trilogy is a collection of books that are by no means fluff and giggles. They cut to the heart of the matter. Murphy Shepherd and his mentor, Bones are compelling, gritty characters that take us on a journey of courage and hope.

These books address the hard truths of human trafficking and essentially the battle for redemption. The idea that leaving the 99 to go rescue the one is always worth it.

I could not turn the pages fast enough to get the conclusion. No spoilers, but it ended the way it always meant to.

Highly recommended trilogy, start at book 1! (The Letter Keeper) You won't regret it.

An advance copy of the book was provided by the publisher via Netgalley. My opinion is my own.

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The Record Keeper is the riveting conclusion to an incredible series! Murphy Shepherd is back, and this time he and Bones are on a mission to finally put a stop to the criminal mastermind they have been fighting for so many years. The raw, gritty truth of human trafficking is contrasted with the unconditional love and sacrifice that marks Bones' life. The ending is heart-wrenching and bittersweet - everything wasn't tied up in a neat bow, but it was the perfect, fitting ending. You will remember this powerful story long after the final page!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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I was provided a free ARC copy of this book by @netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
Wow! This is the third instalment in this series and it is a doozy! The whole series follows Murphy Shepherd as he and his team battle against the horrors of modern day slavery, sex trafficking. All while providing an immense amount of recovery, love, and hope!
In this story we see one of Murphy's worst fears realized and how he works through that, continuing the message that the needs of the one outnumber the 99. We learn more of Bones' backstory and come to understand him better!
This one is also pretty action packed from the beginning! It will be hard to put it down.
This is definitely not a stand alone. You need to have read the first two books (The Water Keeper and The Letter Keeper) to know what is happening and appreciate the characters. But since this one won't be published until July 5th you have time to read those, and grab this one on publication day! 😁
I also could clearly picture many locations along the GA coast that were mentioned, as I have family there!
#NetGalley #TheRecordKeeper

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Charles Martin has become one of my favorite authors. The Record Keeper is the third book in the Murphy Shepherd series about sex trafficking young boys and girls. This is a very difficult topic to read about. The Water Keeper and the Letter Keeper were two of my favorite reads and I was so looking forward to book three. I loved all the characters, Murphy, Bones, Summer, Angel, Gunner and Casey and couldn’t wait to see what they had accomplished later in their lives. Unfortunately The Record Keeper felt short in character development and I feel like I was somewhat cheated in seeing these characters growth.

I am not usually a fan of series books, but since I liked The Letter Keeper as much as The Water Keeper I expected to thoroughly delve into this book. After reading several reviews I must confess that I am an outcast when it comes to rating this book. For me, The Record Keeper, missed the mark on deeper character development and focused too much on the details of the cat and mouse chase. I almost stopped reading after the first 4 chapters but am happy I stuck with it because it did get better.

I suggest reading these books in order. They are not stand alone books. I am sad to have to rate this book three stars, but saying that, no matter what I would have read this third book in the series and I will continue to read all Charles Martin’s books.

Thank you NetGalley and Thomas Nelson for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Whose you are matters more to the soul than who you are or what your are. There is hope.

The series of Murphy Shepherd are not stand alone books but need to be read in the order that they were written to get the most out of them. Murphy is many things. His life centers around rescuing those that have been trafficked. Each book centers around a point in his life and this one is no different. Bones is more than partner in rescuing, he is the one that saw something in Murphy and started a large force to be reckon with. His story is riveting and answers many questions including who is the powerful force against them and the personal ties to Bones. Murphy's greatest rescue will be his greatest test.

A couple of things about these series that are worth noting. First I would call these books a series of parables. Hidden truths that those with ears to hear and eyes to see will feel the burden of sin (the sex trafficking) and the motivation of Murphy's team. What stirs their cup as one of my pastors use to say. There is not much of God this or God that but the condition of our world and how it affects us for better or for worse. It does not leave anyone behind that desires to be rescued but it does show why we may not want that rescue.

I call Charles Martin the Nicholas Sparks of Fictional Christian books. You may want to see why.

A special thank you to Thomas Nelson Books and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review

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this is a book about sex trafficking, it wasn't and easy read, but Charles Martin came highly recommended, this is my first book of his, looking foward to reading more.

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Wow! Such a fantastic conclusion to an amazing series! This was my favorite of the three books. I do recommend that you read the series in order. It's not easy reading about human trafficking, but it's very important. I know I haven't thought enough about the horrors that so many innocent people live through each day. The author brings this truth to light in a way that grabs your attention and pulls at your heart strings. The story is full of action, love, forgiveness and grace.

I love Charles Martin's books. He has such a wonderful way with words. I highly recommend this book as well as the entire series.

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Right off the bat, I'll tell you I'm giving this third-in-a-series of Murphy Shepherd novels a full 5 Star value! Charles Martin, the author, deserves every single one! That's not because it's a happily-ever-after story, because it isn't entirely, and because it's as close to sobering reality as one could get despite being fiction. Martin'll blow your mind with his ingenius work that gives poignant awareness of an insidious evil that is human trafficking for commercial sex exploitation; truly a travesty in real life.

There are several layers in this faith based narrative that are kept strong throughout, right there alongside the strong righteous characters. The residient evil character is strong too, but - well, in an evil way. The layers include weapons, extreme workout; technical 'eyes' controlling; full blast rescue missions (These will likely appeal greatly to male readers - pardon the sterotyping but I think it's true); some tightly held secrets; compassion and love, and so much more. A very serious and solemn message here regarding greed, lust, evil and darkness. The author also tweaks his pen and drops articulate spiritual lessons, somewhat akin to Hansel and Gretel's bread crumbs, only these are faith gems that wait for the reader to retrieve en route to the story's conclusion.

Bones, the mentor, and Murph, the mentee, along with Karen, Clay, Casey, Summer, Gunner, Angel and others are a force to be reckoned with against the tsunami of evil perpetuated by, 'whom could it be' (a secret, so I'm not telling) at the opposing helm. They await that reading tryst with you.

P.S. You'll really love the record keeper!

~Eunice C., Reviewer/Blogger~

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. They are my honest opinion based on this review copy sent by NetGalley and Thomas Nelson (publishers).

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The Record Keeper takes another gritty look at sex trafficking. It's not an easy book to read, but worth exploring this hidden human abuse.

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The Record Keeper by Charles Martin is the third installment of the Murphy Shepherd series. I highly recommend reading the series in order or you’ll miss key parts. This story centers around Bones – where he came from and what he overcame to lead an operation that rescues people from human slavery/trafficking. This story is dark and intense, but Martin weaves such powerful themes of hope, freedom, and salvation throughout every word on the page.

The Record Keeper follows Murphy as he tracks down Bones. He hires a new team of hackers to help him scour the earth to find his friend and mentor. I love the new characters (and hope maybe some of them get a spin-off series of their own someday.) And many characters return from the previous stories (like Summer, Clay, and Gunner.) But just like the first two in the series, this story has lots of action and intense moments that kept a suspense fan like me hooked. I appreciate the overall themes of The Record Keeper. The sacrifices both Bones and Murphy make to find the lost and forgotten is powerful.

The whole series is so well done! This releases on July 5th – and what better way to celebrate Independence Day than with a story about a Shepherd seeking that one lost sheep, bringing freedom to the hopeless and lost.

I received an ebook review copy of this book through NetGalley. All opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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I have truly loved this series. I am reminded to see the hope and the light. This author is truly gifted with his ability to write.
Many thanks to Thomas Nelson Fiction and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.

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The third book in the series.
Heavy dark themed topic, continuing the second book pursuing the human trafficking pyramid head.
That ending!!!

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Murphy Shepherd’s last rescue mission very nearly cost him his life. He’d like nothing more than to stay close to his wife and daughters for a while. But Bones’s brother must be stopped, and there are so many who still need to know they are worth rescuing. As the cat-and-mouse game moves into the open, Murphy is tested at every turn—both physically and mentally. Then the unthinkable happens: Bones is taken. Gone without a trace. Murphy lives by the mantra that love always shows up. But how can he rescue Bones when he has no leads?

The Record Keeper explores the true cost of leaving the ninety-nine to find the one and is a fitting conclusion to the trilogy starting with the Water Keeper, then the Letter Keeper and now this final volume. I was introduced to Charles Martin in my church book club with the reading of The Water Keeper. This author's is the best writer that I have come across in quite a while. When you start one of the books in this trilogy, you better be prepared not to get anything done until you finish! His descriptions and character portrayals are so real and believable that I often wondered if he had first hand knowledge with sex trafficking or had just done a lot of research as he never says in his books how he knows so much on the subject. I highly recommend this trilogy, and it needs to be read in order to get the full benefit as each story after the first builds on the previous story. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for granting my request to read this wonderful book. I sought out and read The Letter Keeper before reading this book and am glad I did.

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I live in a bubble. There is so much evil in the world. And the subject of this book is the most evil. Sex Trafficking. I know this is a work of fiction. Yet I feel this doesn't even cover a drop in the bucket as to what is actually going on in the world. I thank the author for exploiting this evil and covering it the way he did. Like I said. I live in a bubble and I needed to know and recognize what is going on.

First off, Murph is like Daniel Craig, Tom Cruise, and Liam Neeson all rolled up into one. He is that tough! Kinda like a Timex watch, he takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'. I love his character. He and Bones represents the good against the evil. And they don't mind kicking butt and bringing some justice into the world. The light in the darkness. The shepherd going after the one. It seems like a never ending fight that no one will win. The struggle is real.

Secondly, the story line continues as Bones is the record keeper and his twin brother who owns an evil empire seems to come at them at every angle. It is a page turning-staying up all night kind of read.

Lastly, there is tenderness and love for the lost and hurting. There is healing and restoring. There is HOPE.

As I mentioned, it seems like a never ending fight. However, the sheep they find each time they rescue girls and boys from utter horror is a win.
This is the third book in the trilogy and I recommend reading them in order.

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A tense conclusion to the Murphy Shepherd series as Murphy is tested in this cat and mouse game. Readers will need to read the Water Keeper and Letter Keeper for a clearer view of this action packed book. Murphy and his dog Gunner make a great team as they will do anything to rescue women and children who are victims of human trafficking.

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A Richly Told and Riveting Story

Murphy Shepherd finds women and children who are victims of human trafficking. His mission in life is to help these victims find their freedom, but he goes the extra mile by assisting them to recover from the ordeal in a safely guarded location called Freetown. When his best friend and mentor Bones is kidnapped, Murphy will stop at nothing to find him. Murphy and his canine partner Gunner shift into high gear, racing across the country and the ocean to find Bones. Murphy quickly discovers that Bones' kidnapper is Bones’ jealous brother, who has eyes and ears everywhere. Murphy must up his technology game and hire computer experts if he wants to win the battle for Bones life.

The Record Keeper Is a richly told and riveting story that will keep you on the edge of your seat. It’s both a heart-wrenching and action-packed tale with an admirable protagonist.

Murphy Shepherd, also known as David Bishop, will stop at nothing to save trafficking victims. He is bold, fearless, and determined. Gunner, the quintessential German Shepherd, takes the prize for the best partner/dog ever! The cast of characters is superb. I hesitate even to call them characters because, after three books they all feel like family. You can’t help but feel the intensity and heartache and even wonder how much of this story is true to life.

I love Charles Martin’s books and have read every one of them. This one, while stellar, gave me a little pause. There were a few portions of the story, such as Bones’ horrendous youth, that left me unsettled and uncertain. In this latest novel, Martin seems to push the envelope on the level of intensity of the drama that may have some readers needing an emotional rest.

The Record Keeper is a tale of two brothers, one good and one evil. One of these brothers is a major player in the sex trafficking of children, while the other tries to set these children free from this bondage. It is a well-told story of the shepherd who leaves his flock to go and find the one lost sheep. This book concludes the three-part series featuring the indomitable Murphy Shepherd. Other books in the series include The Water Keeper (2020) and The Letter Keeper (2021). You will want to read all three. Charles Martin’s stories are always eye-opening and fabulous.

Thanks to Netgalley and Thomas Nelson for an advance reading copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

Publisher Thomas Nelson
Published July 5, 2022

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I love this series and I don't know if this is the last book of the series or if there will be more. I'm hoping there could be more, but I will continue reading whatever Charles Martin writes because I love his lyrical voice.

This series has been full of the horrors of child slavery, amazing heroism and bravery, redemption and forgiveness, and most of all love. A sacrificial love that is deep and abiding. This book puts Bones (Murphy's mentor) and his twin brother who is evil to the core in the forefront. Although Murphy had come near death in his last rescue mission, he has no choice but to try to stop Bones' brother.

This book is tense and emotional. I think anyone wanting to read it should read The Water Keeper and The Letter Keeper first to get the background on Murphy and Bones. Their history is important to fully understand the relationship and what drives them. Gunner the dog is a hero too and is always present; he's a great character too. The philosophy taught by Bones and followed by Murphy runs throughout the book and in central to the story.

Thanks to Thomas Nelson--FICTION through Netgalley for an advance copy. This book will be published on July 5, 2022. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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