Breaking Creed by Alex Kava is
a fascinating mystery based around a serial killer who is
being chased by an FBI agent and a retired Marine. In this
new series Ryder Creed uses the dog handler skills he learned
as a Marine in his current civilian job. Her other series
has FBI behaviorist Maggie O’ Dell investigating horrid
Creed was introduced in Stranded, a book from Kava’s
other series whose main character is FBI behaviorist Maggie
O’ Dell. Although the Creed series is being billed as
new, it is actually a spin-off of the O’ Dell books.
Kava noted that her two series, the O’ Dell and the
Creed books, will overlap. “Each series will alternate
between the main character and the supporting one, but both
will have a strong role in the plots. They will not just make
cameo appearances. Yet, respectively they will have their
own secondary characters. The many different scenarios that
I can get into is very exciting for me. Ryder is a different
kind of investigative character. He does not carry a gun and
is not an intricate part of the crimes scene investigation.
I am able to add a new dimension to the plot.”
Readers will find Creed a likeable but damaged character,
who is trying to overcome PTSD. He does this with the support
of his good friend, Hannah. He gains solace by taking in and
training abandoned dogs to assist law enforcement. Hannah
also helps the discarded, individuals who are runaways, abused
women, and veterans that must try to overcome tragic circumstances,
among them a former Marine, Jason. What makes these stories
so interesting are the engaging characters, the chemistry
between Ryder and Maggie, and the banter among Hannah and
Creed. But the character that stole the show is Grace, a Jack
Russell Terrier. She is feisty, scrappy, driven, and eager
In this story Creed and his dogs comb for drugs, become a
search and rescue team for trafficked children, and help O’Dell
find the dead victims of a serial killer. The suspense is
electrifying, as Creed, O’Dell, and company must find
the killer before he finds them. To add to the intensity Kava
brings in creepy, crawling things, such as fire ants, scorpions,
Kava gives a shout out to those in the military through many
of her characters. Hannah’s husband, Creed, and Jason
all served, although her husband was killed while deployed.
The author always touches on an issue related to military
personnel. In Breaking Creed she discusses PTSD while in her
next book Kava will explore the suicide rate among veterans.
Breaking Creed has a very fast-paced
and thrilling plot with many twists and turns. For any dog
lover this is a must read. If not an animal lover, readers
can also just enjoy the tough, smart, and dynamic characters
of this series.
author also gave a heads up about her next book, Silent
Creed. It will continue the sexual tension between Maggie
and Ryder as they work on a new case together. Kava is known
for including among her antagonists non-human elements. With
Silent Creed the threat comes from, not creepy things, but
begins with a massive landslide in North Carolina. Creed and
his canine partners are called in to help with the search
and rescue of a facility that was destroyed by the landslide.
Maggie is also brought in to investigate the facilities secret
experiments involving viruses.