Bedeviled (A Father Jake Austin Mystery #4)

John A.

Father Jake Austin is a very busy man. Not only is he a priest of a small congregation, but he is also a doctor and a parent to his young five-year-old nephew. Now in the fourth book of this powerful series, he also takes on an investigation of a preacher who may be involved in a drug overdose of a teenage boy, and the strange disappearance of a nun. The story follows Father Jake Austin and his best friend, Sheriff Treemont, “Tree” Macon, as they work together to unravel what may have happened to both of these individuals. Their investigations definitely take them to some frightening places. 

“Bedeviled” is a story full of modern world problems such as murder, church corruption and kidnapping. However, the development of the main character, Father Jake Austin, is lacking which made him less interesting to read about. This being the fourth book in a series may have been the reason behind the lack of backstory for his character, and readers are likely to find his character more intriguing if they read first three books. Despite this, Mr. Vanek writes an incredibly suspenseful mystery with a few twists and turns that are sure to capture the reader's attention. What information is gathered of the side characters in the story make them out to be very dark and sinister, which creates a very ominous atmosphere. Father Jake Austin is written as a man who never loses his compassion and is bound and determined to protect those around him whom he loves, and it would be great to learn more about his history.

Jennifer Shepherd