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Fifteen years ago, Shelby Pearce confessed to murdering her brother-in-law and was sent to prison. Now she’s out on parole and looking for a fresh start in the small town of Valleysburg, Texas. But starting over won’t be easy for an ex-con.

FBI Special Agent Denton McClure was a rookie fresh out of Quantico when he was first assigned the Pearce case. He’s always believed Shelby embezzled $500,000 from her brother-in-law’s account. So he’s going undercover to befriend Shelby, track down the missing money, and finally crack this case.

But as Denton gets closer to Shelby, he begins to have a trace of doubt about her guilt. Someone has Shelby in their crosshairs. It’s up to Denton to stop them before they silence Shelby—and the truth—forever.


DiAnn Mills recently spent some time with The Big Thrill discussing her latest romantic suspense, TRACE OF DOUBT:

Which took shape first: plot, character, or setting?

The plot took shape first! I imagined a frightened teen confessing to a horrendous crime to save her pregnant sister.

DiAnn Mills

What was the biggest challenge this book presented? What about the biggest opportunity?

The biggest challenge was showing a woman who’d spent years with hardened criminals still believing she’d done the best thing for her sister.

How does this book make a contribution to the genre?

The romance is with an unlikely hero who believed he despised her. The suspense focuses on who wants the heroine dead and why?

No spoilers, but what can you tell us about your book that we won’t find in the jacket copy or the PR material?

I chose how multiple family issues can blindside a person into believing a lie.

What authors or books have influenced your career as a writer, and why?

David Baldacci—outstanding stories that reflect real people, real problems, and real suspense.

Steven James—an authentic writer who spins amazing stories.

Robert Dugoni—a writer who creates thrilling and suspense-filled stories that keep me turning pages.

What’s the one question you wish someone would ask you about this book, or your work in general? And please answer the question too!

Q: Why do you write romantic suspense that uses at least one Christian character?

A: The answer is we live in a dangerous and unpredictable world, and I want to show hope from a faith-based character.



DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She weaves memorable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels. DiAnn believes every breath of life is someone’s story, so why not capture those moments and create a thrilling adventure?

Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists and won two Christy Awards, the Golden Scroll, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, the Jerry Jenkins Writers Guild, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is the director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference and Mountainside Retreats: Marketing, Nonfiction, Novelists, and Speakers with social media specialist Edie Melson. DiAnn continues her passion of helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country.

DiAnn has been termed a coffee snob and roasts her own coffee beans. She’s an avid reader, loves to cook, and believes her grandchildren are the smartest kids in the universe. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.

DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Goodreads, BookBub, YouTube, LinkedIn, or MeWe.

To learn more about the author and her work, please visit her website.