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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Lariat Girl is a psychological thriller novel written by Suzanne Prescott. Kenley Madson was not your ordinary teen. She loved the action and adventure lifestyle that went with having a dad who had been a stuntman and now had a training center for people who wanted to expand their physical abilities. Kenley and her 11-year-old brother, Cooper, were two of his biggest fans and most dedicated students. Kenley proved to be gifted at martial arts and weaponry, while Cooper was already an accomplished parkour artist. Kenley’s life would be forever changed, however, as a result of her decision to donate blood through her high school’s blood drive. She wondered about the intrusive questions she was expected to answer on the drive’s questionnaire, and the behavior of the blood drive personnel was questionable, to say the least. After their workout at the center, Kenley and Cooper stopped at a market to pick up supplies for their mom. Suddenly, a black van careened into the parking lot, trapping Kenley’s exit. A masked man grabbed her and began pulling her towards the van, but he had no idea who he was attempting to strongarm. Kenley did manage to get free just as police sirens began wailing and cop cars approached the scene, but Cooper had jumped up onto the assailant’s back in his efforts to help Kenley. When the man rushed into the van, Cooper was still attached to him. Who had taken Cooper, and what did they want from the Madson family?
Suzanne Prescott’s Lariat Girl is a fast-paced and exciting story about a strong, capable, and fearless young woman who risks her life to save her little brother. Prescott’s Kenley is a marvelous character, one who’s equally at ease with fixing her car as she is with martial arts and excelling at school. Her presence of mind and composure under the horrific circumstances she voluntarily enters are inspirational. I love encountering strong female lead characters in the books I read, and Kenley has what it takes. Prescott’s plot is enthralling and complex, and her writing style works quite well for this type of thriller. I also enjoyed the police procedural aspects of the story. Lariat Girl is most highly recommended.