Don’t let the title throw you off. The Church Builder is not a inspirational story about a pastor starting a new church. Rather, it is a tale of suspense, intrigue, and mystery as Bethany Barclay, a young, small town lawyer, finds herself in the middle of a game of chess. And she is one of the pawns it seems. When the son of her wealthiest client is found dead in her kitchen, Bethany becomes the prime suspect for that and a number of other crimes. She goes on the run to prove her innocence, which involves putting together the puzzle pieces of the last few months of her now deceased best-friend’s life. She soon discovers she is in the middle of something much bigger than she can comprehend.

A.L. Shields (the pen name of Yale law professor Stephen L. Carter) masterfully weaves a story with plenty of twists and turns that leaves the reader on the edge of their seat. My only complaint is that it ends too soon (after 400-some pages). I’m hoping the story will continue in another book.

I received a copy of The Church Builder from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.