20 August 2018

Surpring & Satisfying in an Alaskan Setting | Formula of Deception by Carrie Stuart Parks


An artist hiding from an escaped killer uncovers one of World War II’s most dangerous secrets—a secret that desperate men will do anything to keep hidden.

After the murder of her twin sister, Murphy Anderson changed her name and appearance and moved to Kodiak, Alaska, to avoid the press and publicity. But when local authorities discover she’s an artist and request her help in drawing a dying man’s memories, she unintentionally ends up in the limelight again—and back in the killer’s crosshairs.

The deathbed confessions of an Alaskan hunter have Murphy drawing the five bodies he discovered on remote Ruuwaq Island ten years ago. But what investigators find has them mystified. Evidence suggests that the bodies were deliberately destroyed, and what they uncover in an abandoned Quonset hut from World War II only brings more questions.

As one by one the investigators who were at the hut die, Murphy knows there is something much darker at stake. What happened on this island during the war? And who is willing to kill to keep its secrets buried?

Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: July 3, 2018


First of all, Alaska has long been my favorite place I’ve never been (which might make zero sense), so the simple fact that Formula of Deception takes place in Kodiak already had me falling in love with the story. 

Then, within this Alaskan setting, author Carrie Stuart Parks sets up a plot involving forensic artistry, decade-old and days-old murders, a World War II mystery, and a past that haunts main character Murphy Anderson at every turn. There are a lot of questions to answer, secrets to reveal, truths to discover, and with every turn of the page, the suspense and intrigue grow.  

I so enjoyed accompanying Murphy Anderson through Formula of Deception. Her story is compelling, adventurous, and incredibly interesting as nods to Alaskan history intertwine with the present, leading to a surprising and satisfying conclusion. Readers looking for mystery and suspense should consider reading this latest novel from Parks—it doesn’t disappoint. 


Thanks to TLC Book Tours, I received a complimentary copy of Formula of Deception and the opportunity to provide an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own.


Carrie Stuart Parks is an ECPA Christy Award and multiple ACFW Carol and Inspy Award–winning author. An internationally known forensic artist, Carrie draws on her extensive experience with actual criminal investigations to write authentic, true-to-life fictional suspense. Carrie lives in Idaho and travels with her husband, Rick, across the US and Canada, teaching courses in forensic art to law enforcement professionals. She has won numerous awards for her fine art and is the author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing and painting. 


  1. Hi Hallie, Thank you so much for the lovely review! I hope you someday get to visit Alaska. Blessings, -Carrie

  2. I've camped in AK three times, twice for the entire summer, and AK is my favorite state, although I've only been there in the summer. The scenery and wildlife are unlike anywhere else. Can't wait to go back again someday.

    1. That's awesome, Danielle! What a beautiful place to visit.