Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Bookish Tuesday | 2018 CAROL Award Finalist | Ghost Heart

Review by Iola Goulton @iolagoulton

Lisa Harris is one of the regular International Christian Fiction Writers bloggers who has been named a finalist in the 2018 CAROL Awards from American Christian Fiction Writers. She is a finalist in the Mystery/Suspense/Thriller category with a novel she co-wrote with Lynne Gentry.

Congratulations, Lisa and Lynne!

The three finalists for the Mystery/Suspense/Thriller category are:

  • Four Months in Cuba by Luana Ehrlich, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editors Pat Brown and Jodi Shumway
  • Ghost Heart by Lisa Harris and Lynne Gentry, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editor Ellen Tarver
  • Portrait of Vengeance by Carrie Stuart Parks, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Amanda Bostic and Erin Healy

Click here to check out the rest of the finalists.

To honour Lisa and Lynne, today we're resharing a review of the eye-opening Ghost Heart. This review previously appeared at www.iolagoulton.com.

A Medical Thriller Asking Big Questions

Ghost Heart is medical thriller. I have a love-hate relationship with medical thrillers. I love it because I love the suspense aspects. I hate it because it highlights the inequalities in medical profession both within countries like America, and globally. A million dollars for a heart transplant? The mind boggles.Yes, there is some blood and gore (gore = anything that can't be fixed with an Elastoplast. There are some good reasons why I didn't go into a medical profession). The worst of it is actually in the Prologue, so if you read the sample and are afraid it's going to get worse, don't worry. It doesn't.

Kelsey Taylor is five years old, and needs a heart transplant stop urgently. Her mother, Catherine, is prepared to do anything to save her daughter. Even going to Africa to for a heart transplant. The only way she save her daughter is to ask her father for help—which could destroy her relationship with her husband.

Mia Kendall is a heart surgeon in the public hospital in Tanzania. She finds her heart transplant patients are dying. But the transplant patients from the nearby private hospital not. She's suspicious. What is happening? Is there a problem with her surgical methods? Her post-operative care? Or is there a problem with the transplant organs?

Jeme is a Tanzanian wife and mother. Her husband has recently had a heart transplant, but he's sick again. And she's trying to protect her daughter—an albino, at risk of being kidnapped and murdered by hunters for her white skin and blue eyes. Unfortunately, this part of the story is based on fact. Albinos are considered cursed, yet at that same time, their body parts are considered good luck charms.

Ghost Heart focuses on the people who are trying to save lives. Catherine and Jeme, trying to save the lives of their daughters from two very different threats. Mia, trying to save her patients, and to make up for one mistake long ago. Organ transplant pilot Race Daniels, trying to save lives to make up for the two he couldn't save.

It also highlights the tragedy of our modern medical system, and the way it favours the haves over the have-nots. Those who have insurance or money or who live in a country with a good public health system vs. those who don't. The tragedy of transplants—the fact one person has to die in order for another to receive a new heart. The tragedy of greed—that where money is involved, someone will find a way to get rich at the expense of others.

The novel is suspense from start to finish, with several unexpected twists. Don't do what I did and start it when you should be going to bed! Recommended for all medical suspense lovers.

Thanks to the authors for providing a free ebook for review.

Amazon Description

A brilliant transplant surgeon. A rogue organ broker. A ghost child.
And the legend that could destroy them all.

A brutal murder convinces surgeon Mia Kendall there’s more than she imagined to the mysterious spike in heart transplant rejections. Determined to find answers before she loses another patient, Mia gets sucked into a dangerous international medical web. With time running out for her youngest transplant recipient, Mia is forced to partner with a disillusioned ex-military pilot who flies brokered organs across East Africa. But searching for the truth will prove costly for the unlikely duo racing to stop a madman before he annihilates a rare and cursed bloodline.

From best-selling author Lisa Harris and award-winning author Lynne Gentry comes a chilling, hypnotic medical thriller that will take you from the suburbs of Cincinnati to the jungles of Africa.

You can read the introduction to Ghost Heart below:


  1. Great idea, Iola, to honour Lisa and Lynne.

    I loved Ghost Heart with its multi-layered storylines and am so looking forward to reading the sequel.

  2. Congratulations, Lisa! This looks like a great opportunity to use your background in Africa.