Ever since I received her very first novel, Carrie Stuart Parks is one of my not to be missed authors. I absolutely love her character Gwen Marcey, a broken but tenacious woman who struggles daily to deal with everything life has dealt her. Somehow she manages to keep going and excels at her job as a forensic artist.

I am fascinated with the details of Gwen’s occupation and the author’s own experiences in the field bring authenticity to the books. “Portrait of Vengeance” is an intense read in which Gwen’s mysterious past clashes with her current case. The similarities are overwhelming and bring forth long buried memories for Gwen. Life threatening events and a police department that obviously is not trilled with her presence only make her work harder to solve her case.

I am hooked on Parks’ Gwen Marcey novels and hope that she will continue the series indefinitely. It’s also fun to see Gwen show up in cameo roles in another favorite author’s books.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by Amazon Vine. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


An unsolved case. A tempest of memories. The future’s at stake—and time is running out . . .

Gwen Marcey has done a good job keeping the pain of her past boxed up. But as she investigates the case of a missing child in Lapwai, Idaho, details keep surfacing that are eerily similar to her childhood traumas. She doesn’t believe in coincidences. So what’s going on here?

No one knows more about the impact of the past than the Nez Perce people of Lapwai. Gwen finds herself an unwelcome visitor to some, making her investigation even more difficult. The questions keep piling up, but answers are slow in coming—and the clock is ticking for a missing little girl. Meanwhile, Gwen’s ex-husband is threatening to take sole custody of their daughter.

As Gwen’s past and present collide, she’s in a desperate race for the truth. Because only truth will ensure she still has a future.


Carrie Stuart Parks is a Christy finalist as well as a Carol award-winning author. She has won numerous awards for her fine art as well. An internationally known forensic artist, she travels with her husband, Rick, across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law enforcement professionals. The author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing and painting, Carrie continues to create dramatic watercolors from her studio in the mountains of Idaho.