Cover Image: Red Flags

Red Flags

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Member Reviews

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me the opportunity to read and review this novel. I am rating this book based the stars due to lack of time to leave a full review.
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FBI, new-series, forensics, abduction, thriller, relatives, suspense, mystery, secrets, government-offices, politics, ethics, online-gaming****

This is an amazingly detailed book that actually took me quite a bit of notating to keep the characters cohesive. The storyline is both complex and seems to compound (and sometimes confound). The interpersonals are well set up to continue into more in series, and that is a very good thing. The publisher's blurb is a good hook and not recap is needed. Loved it!
I requested and received a free e-book copy from Kensington Books via NetGalley. Thank you!
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I’m a long time lover of CSI and love the challenge of trying to solve a case before the professionals, so this book was a good fit for me. I’ll admit to being hesitant to start this one after reading the synopsis and discovering that it centered around the kidnapping of children. However, I was surprised how fast-paced and intense this book was and will admit to putting off several things I should have been doing in order to finish this book! 

Stuffed full of ethical ponderings and shocking secrets, this book is told from a unique perspective. Where most investigative style books are written from the investigating police officer’s point of view, this one is refreshingly told from the crime scene analyst’s viewpoint. I noticed that after some initial hand holding, I was running ahead of the analyst and noting things to investigate as evidence. It kept me engaged. 

While the forensic technology and process intrigued me, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that I skimmed plenty over the gaming sections. I did get the intended message, of online safety, despite skipping large sections. In the same way, I did enjoy an intelligent read, but ended up scribbling crib notes for myself as clues and as reminders for character reference as I felt there were too many for me to remember! 

This is a great thriller written by a forensic scientist and crime scene investigator who at one time also worked in the coroner’s office trace evidence lab. It definitely oozes authenticity. 

I was gifted this advance copy by Lisa Black, Kensington Books, and NetGalley and was under no obligation to provide a review.
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Red Flags is a great introduction to forensic science and Black's new series introducing Dr. Carr a DC crime scene analyst and  pathologist Dr. Davies of the Locard Institute. Dr. Ellie Carr finds herself suddenly helping her cousin, Becca who she has not seen in years and not necessarily that close to, and her cousin's husband Hunter to find out who kidnapped their baby. It's an awkward position to be in that as an analyst she must keep the investigation from getting personal. Hunter and Becca are a wealthy couple deep in the world of creating online gaming for chldren and in the midst of seeking political support for their programs. It seems that with a demand for an extreme ransom and instructions the kidnapping is all about the safety of gaming for children. But who is behind it all? The characters are flawed but its Carr and Davies working together and make quite the team that solves the case. The plot is well developed, the process of crime scene analyzing and seeking clues is very informative, the characters are quite interesting and Black will keep you guessing to the very end who is behind the kidnappings.
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Red Flags is a true thriller that gives you plenty of clues but you still end up not guessing whodunit! I loved this book. The writing style is descriptive but without unnecessary waffle. The fact that it is written predominantly from the crime scene analyst Ellie Carr’s point of view makes for a brilliant change to the usual, suspect/police point of view. I was drawn into Ellie’s life completely, feeling for her as she is drawn into a case that involves her family. She hates the fact that she might be being used as a inside spy to see if she can dig the dirt on them and hopefully get to the bottom of the babies disappearance. She feels very uncomfortable about the entire situation but also her need to find the baby alive drives her onwards.

The story is utterly compelling and although gets a little complicated at times I was just engrossed. A book that makes me think along the way is a fine book in my opinion. It becomes clear that this book has a big message to deliver, one of online safety of our children. It is delivered in an expert style that keeps the pace moving and holds your interest completely. I almost felt like I needed a pen a paper to write the clues down and figure it all out. Red Flags is a book that I would highly recommend if you like a great read that actually makes you think, has plenty of twists and leaves you knowing you’ve just read a great thriller.
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Thank NetGalley for the opportunity to preview Red Flags. 
Black is a very good author and in her new book she mixes crime, mystery and politics.  Strong female characters drive the plot that has a few surprises and twists.

A sold novel by Black. 
3 stars .
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I cannot comment much about Red Flags by Lisa Black because I don't want to give away the culprit, but dang, what a mess!! 

I enjoyed Lisa Black's writing style, though, at times, there was too much technical information and extraneous details that pulled me away and had me skimming some of the pages. 

The story moved along and held my interest. It's a good start to a new series. I may check out more books by this author.

#RedFlags #NetGalley @KensingtonBooks
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I love a good mystery. One where I’m given the clues and I have to work at figuring out who the villain is. This book delivers that. The writing was terrific! I couldn’t put the book down. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I received a copy from the publisher through NetGalley.
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Characters are unlikable for quite awhile.  Once they break through the distrust the plot and characters move along. 
Thank you netgalley and the publisher for this arc
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Red Flags by Lisa Black  A good mystery and an unexpected outcome.  The book was largely  focused on technical aspects gaming and forensic technology.  

Thank you to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the opportunity to preview the book.
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In Lisa Blacks first book in the series, Locard Institute Thriller, Red Flags, Ellie Carr is a successful forensic investigator despite a rocky start in life filled with varied foster families but lots of love. One of those families is with her cousin, Rebecca, who with her politically-motivated husband has grown up to be in the top levels of influence in national politics. When their infant son is kidnapped, they ask for Ellie's help, claiming she is the only one they can trust. The problem is, Ellie never felt that close to Rebecca when she lived with her and isn't sure she is telling the truth about the events surrounding the kidnapping. When the children of other business friends of the Washington power couple are also kidnapped, it becomes clear this isn't personal to Rebecca's family but may be related to a business venture that provides online games for kids that may or may not be addictive.

The story is clever, fast-moving, complicated enough to keep my interest, with maybe too much backstory that slows the pace. It includes a lot of tech wizardry to solve the crime which I always enjoy. When I finished the story, I realized the author had two messages: 1) Beware of people you meet online, especially if you're a child, and 2) Online games are designed to be addictive. It's a good cautionary story that I enjoyed reading.
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WOW!  What a suspenseful, fast paced thriller that starts with the disappearance of a baby and continues with several more children being kidnapped.   I was captivated from the start and could not put this book down so invested was I in baby Mason’s fate.  This is my first Lisa Black novel, and I will be checking out her back list very soon. 
Family secrets, corrupt Washington politics, ethical questions regarding gaming, data protection, underaged users are just some of the issues raised all the while keeping the reader hooked on the plot.  We hear from many perspectives, and I especially enjoyed the voice of the Sophie and Noah.
The characters are beautifully drawn.  Dr Ellie Carr won my heart as she does all she can to help her estranged cousin find her child.   Even though she is technically undermined when the family chose to bring in private forensics, she puts herself aside and works for the higher purpose.  I enjoyed Rachael Davies and her backstory almost as much as Ellie’s.  It’s nice to see women working collaboratively together in a professional setting like this.
 If you are someone who enjoys forensic science you’ll love the amount of detail described with FBI and private labs capabilities compared.   I am no expert but everything seemed authentic, accurate and highly up to date.
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I have mixed feelings about this one, it was interesting in some ways and raised some ethical issues but it also felt flat at times/overly focused on details that weren't interesting to me.  about gaming.   The ending was unexpected and I liked that   3.5 rounded up to 4
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This book is very easy to read, but very difficult to put down. The opening catches attention, and as the plot "thickens", I only put it away when I had to go to work. I will finish before I go to sleep tonight.
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A very clever story line with memorable characters. Books that involve missing babies and/or children are always a taut read. I'd be happy to read more from this author and her forensic folks!
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An interesting, fast-paced mystery involving a kidnapped baby.  Although I am not in the least scientifically-oriented, for some reason I really enjoy mysteries with forensic details.  There is a lot of technical info in this novel both on forensics and about the gaming industry.  I enjoyed the developing relationship between the two main characters.  Strong start for a new series.
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Such a thrill! Loved the characters the plot and kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time! For sure will read more by this author!
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This looks to be the start of a promising new series from Lisa Black.  Dr. Ellie Carr is an FBI crime scene specialist, called in to handle a case of a missing baby--only to discover that it's the child of an estranged cousin.  Despite an apparent conflict of interest, she's asked to stay on the case by the FBI and finds herself paired up with a private consultant, Dr. Raechael Davies, hired by the child's father.   As to be expected from Lisa Black, the techniques and procedures ring true--and the discussions of how the reward structures of video games are created to keep players playing are chilling in their own way.  I loved the interplay between Ellie and Raechel and can't wait to see how their working relationship develops in the future.  Highly recommended.

Thanks to Kensington Books for access to a digital ARC on NetGalley.
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When a kidnapping involves an infant, and then no ransom note. Parents  are well known, living in a mansion.  Surprised to find this was a cousin from when they were together in teen years. Conflict of interest, Ellie was asked to stay on the case.
Ellie is a crime analyst, with a puzzling case. A kidnapping or a well organized plot
Baffling, twisted with power, money and a young four month old child is now involved. Well done and will definitely keep readers  interest and to enjoy
Given  ARC for my voluntary  review and my honest opinion for Net Galley and Kensington.
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A young child has gone missing and the clock is ticking to find them. Dr Ellie Carr has just arrived at the mansion and she hopes that she can find some forensic evidence. But the case just gets harder once she finds out that the one parent is her cousin Becca. There is even more pressure on her to find something anything that will help with finding the baby Mason.
Once Locard the private institute is brought on board everything changes and Ellie hopes that this can only help find Mason. There are too many unanswered questions why kidnap Mason? Who has the most to gain by destroying the Carlisle's? What are they hiding?
The list of suspects is long but Ellie thinks that the suspect is closer to home they just need to find the proof? But will they be too late?
A thrilling read. The family has tons of secrets and they didn't realize how much they would hurt everyone. You never know who you can trust.
I liked Ellie as she wants to do the right thing and she knows that she always falls in line but this time she can't stick up for family as that would just be wrong. I felt for her as she never had a great childhood as the girls made her a pawn in the games. 
Thank you Netgalley & the publisher Kensington books for the ARC copy. This is my voluntary review.
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