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A Review of What You See by Hank Phillippi Ryan

What You See (Jane Ryland & Jake Brogan #4)

by Hank Phillippi Ryan


Sometimes people think they know what you are going to say before you finish telling them something. They may jump in and finish your sentence for you, or even worse they may just assume that they understand what you are trying to tell them, and then not really listen to you. They may be on their phone or watching something on TV, or thinking about their hot date for Saturday night. Communication seems to be suffering in these fast paced days that we are living.

Ms. Ryan highlights this phenomena in What You See. Everyone cuts off each other. They are trying to multitask and therefore can barely single-task. Too much is going on, and too many worries and problems get in the way, so everyone thinks that they are getting the whole picture, but really they are missing crucial facts.

All of this churning around frustrated me. I wanted to yell at Detective Jake Brogan. He needed to follow-up. He had to do one thing at a time, but of course he couldn’t. He was pulled every which way and didn’t even have time to sleep, which just made everything worse. Laid-off Reporter Jane Ryland wanted to find a new job. She had her sister’s wedding to deal with at the same time. Then her sister’s future step-daughter goes missing. She is offered a temporary job with a local TV station. Everything happens at once. I wanted to yell at Jane too. Everyone just needs to calm down and complete what they are doing!

This book is very fast paced. It’s hard to feel comfortable while reading it, but that’s what the author wanted to convey. She wanted to make you feel what all of the characters were feeling, the hectic pace and the confusion. The feeling like you were being pulled in multiple directions, never able to compete anything before having to switch tasks and work on something else. The struggles of dealing with other family members. Trying to keep feeling from being hurt. She did a very effective job.

I give What You See 4 Stars out of 5 and a Thumbs Up! If you are ready to put up with the fast-paced challenge of modern multitasking along with the struggles that dealing with the secrets that families keep, then this book will keep you up all night.

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher.

Book Description

What You See by Hank Phillippi RyanWhat You See: another thrilling installment in Hank Phillippi Ryan’s award-winning Jane Ryland mystery series.

Why would a father abduct his own child? A wedding is planned in Jane Ryland’s family, but there’s a disaster instead. Nine-year-old Gracie-supposed to be the flower girl-has been taken by her stepdad. Where are they? Is the girl in danger? Reporter Jane Ryland learns there’s a limit to the bonds of family-and learns to her peril what happens when loved ones are pushed too far.

Meanwhile, Detective Jake Brogan’s got a doozy of a case. At Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall, a man is stabbed to death in front of a crowd of tourists snapping photos of the murder on their cell phones. Solving the case should be easy, but the pictures and surveillance video lead him to a dark conspiracy of extortion and stolen lives.

Jane and Jake must explore where their loyalties lie-to each other? To their families? To their careers? If they make the wrong decision, the consequences could be fatal.

Book Details

Series: Jane Ryland (Book 4)
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Forge Books (October 20, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0765374951
ISBN-13: 978-0765374950
Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.3 x 9.6 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds

About the Author

hank-ryan-crop-pressHANK PHILLIPPI RYAN is the investigative reporter for Boston’s NBC affiliate. A television journalist since 1975, she has won 33 Emmys and thirteen Edward R. Murrow awards for her work. Her work has resulted in new laws, people sent to prison, homes removed from foreclosure, and millions of dollars in restitution.

A best-selling author of seven bestselling novels of suspense, Hank’s first Jane Ryland novel,THE OTHER WOMAN won the prestigious Mary Higgins Clark Award! It was nominated for the Anthony, Agatha, Daphne, Shamus and Macavity Awards. THE WRONG GIRL won the Agatha for Best Mystery, the Daphne for best suspense. It spent seven weeks on the Boston Globe Bestseller list.

Her current book TRUTH BE TOLD also won the AGATHA for Best Novel of 2014. it is also a Library Journal Best of 2014.

WHAT YOU SEE (Oct Forge 2015) is already an RTBR TOP PICK! Reviewers say “Ryan is master of her craft” and say the book offers “exceptional suspense!”

Reviewers have called her “a superb and gifted storyteller” (Booklist), ” a master of crafting suspenseful mysteries” and “Stellar!” (Library Journal.)

Ryan has won the Agatha, Anthony and Macavity awards for her short stories.

Hank is on the national board of directors of Mystery Writers of America (and a founding instructor at MWA-U) and is 2013 president of national Sisters in Crime.

She’s been a radio reporter, a political campaign staffer, a legislative aide in the United States Senate, and in a two-year stint in Rolling Stone Magazine’s Washington Bureau, worked on the political column “Capitol Chatter” and organized presidential campaign coverage for Hunter S. Thompson. She began her TV career anchoring and reporting the news for TV stations in her home town of Indianapolis and then Atlanta.

She and her husband, a nationally renowned criminal defense and civil rights attorney, live just outside Boston, Massachusetts. http://www.HankPhillippiRyan.com


A Review of Truth Be Told by Hank Phillippi Ryan

Truth Be Told

by Hank Phillippi Ryan

“Write what you know.” One of the most commonly given pieces of advice to new writers. Most people take it too literally. It becomes a pair of handcuffs. Ms. Ryan took that advice and used it to write an exciting, fast-paced mystery thriller. She uses her experience as an  investigative reporter in Boston to enhance the realism of her descriptions. Her journalism background also comes through in the tightness of her prose. She doesn’t waste words, just says what needs to be said to tell the story, but she always says enough so that it feels real.

Truth Be Told is an excellent book. The multiple story-lines twist around each other. They intersect, and then separate. You are sure that they are tied together, but then something else happens that throws that idea into doubt. Then just when you think that you know what is going on, Ms. Ryan throws in something totally unexpected. You never feel that the action is forced or unrealistic. It is all totally believable. You don’t want to put the book down.

Ms. Ryan does a great job of putting life into her characters. Jane Ryland feels like a tough reporter. She is hard-working and goes the extra mile to get her story. Her personal life isn’t as clear. She and Jake Brogan have something going, but there is a lot in the way. How can a reporter and a police detective be together? How can they deal with the different demands of their jobs.

The main idea behind this whole book is the search for truth. Some people want to find it and expose it for all to see, and others want to hide it, to twist it, to bury it, so that nobody ever knows the truth. But “Truth Be Told”. The book lives up to its name. The truth comes out, mostly.

This was a great book. I’m going to have to keep and eye on Ms. Ryan, and if I ever get any free time, search out her earlier works. Even though this is book three in the series, you won’t have any problem jumping right into the story. I didn’t.

I give Truth Be Told 5 stars out of 5, and Two Big Thumbs Up! Once you start reading it you won’t want to stop. Great job.

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher, Forge Books.

Book Description

truth-be-told-225Truth Be Told, part of the bestselling Jane Ryland and Jake Brogan series by Agatha, Anthony, Mary Higgins Clark, and Macavity Award-winning author Hank Phillippi Ryan, begins with tragedy: a middle-class family evicted from their suburban home. In digging up the facts on this heartbreaking story—and on other foreclosures— reporter Ryland soon learns the truth behind a big-bucks scheme and the surprising players who will stop at nothing, including murder, to keep their goal a secret. Turns out, there’s more than one way to rob a bank.

Boston police detective Jake Brogan has a liar on his hands. A man has just confessed to the famous twenty-year-old Lilac Sunday killing, and while Jake’s colleagues take him at his word, Jake is not so sure. But he has personal reasons for hoping they’ve finally solved the cold case.

Financial manipulation, the terror of foreclosures, the power of numbers, the primal need for home and family and love. What happens when what you believe is true turns out to be a lie?


Book Details

Series: Jane Ryland (Book 3)
Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Forge Books; First Edition edition (October 7, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0765374935
ISBN-13: 978-0765374936
Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.4 x 1.5 inches
Shipping Weight: 1 pound


About the Author

Photo: Lynn Wayne
Photo: Lynn Wayne

HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN is the on-air investigative reporter for Boston’s NBC affiliate. She’s won 32 EMMYs, 12 Edward R. Murrow awards and dozens of other honors for her ground-breaking journalism. A bestselling author of six mystery novels, Ryan has won multiple prestigious awards for her crime fiction: the Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, and for THE OTHER WOMAN, the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award. National reviews have called her a “master at crafting suspenseful mysteries” and “a superb and gifted storyteller.”

THE WRONG GIRL,  a seven-week Boston Glose bestseller, has the extraordinary honor of winning the 2013 Agatha Award for Best Contemporary Novel and the 2014 Daphne Award for Mainstream Suspense. It is now an Anthony nominee.
Hank is on the national board of Mystery Writers of America and 2013 president of national Sisters in Crime.  Her new thriller TRUTH BE TOLD received starred reviews from Booklist and Library Journal, which raved “Drop everything and binge read…”!
The Book Description and Details are from Amazon. Truth Be Told