Lynn H. Blackburn is the award-winning author of Unknown Threat Series and the Dive Team Investigations Series. She believes in the power of stories, especially those that remind us that true love exists, a gift from the Truest Love. Blackburn is passionate about CrossFit, coffee, and chocolate (don’t make her choose) and experimenting with recipes that feed both body and soul. She lives in Simpsonville, South Carolina, with her true love, Brian, and their three children.
Perfectly balancing chilling suspense and uplifting romance, Blackburn introduced readers to her Defend and Protect Series in 2021 with Unknown Threat. In this interview, Blackburn talks with us about her second installment in the series, Malicious Intent.
FF: Malicious Intent is the second book in your Defend and Protect Series. Can you tell us about your newest novel?
Dr. Ivy Collins, founder and CEO of Hedera, Inc., is ready to begin clinical trials of her company’s cutting-edge prosthetic. Her work has been heralded by government, medical, and advocacy groups, and everyone hopes the device will be a success. Well, almost everyone. Someone is trying to sabotage Hedera and the launch, but to what purpose—and how far will they go to get what they want?
Meanwhile, US Secret Service Special Agent Gil Dixon can’t believe he’s finally been reunited with Ivy, his childhood best friend. Now that he’s found her again, Gil intends to spend the rest of his life with her. But it will take all his skill to uncover the truth in time to save Ivy’s life’s work, her own life, and the innocent lives caught in the crossfire.
FF: What can you share about the main characters, Ivy Collins and Gil Dixon, and their history together?
Without giving away too much, I can say that Ivy and Gil were best friends as young children and have been separated for many years. Their reunion is something both of them have longed for, but it isn’t what either of them had ever imagined or expected!
FF: Ivy’s passion is centered around helping amputees and a desire to make their lives easier. What happened in Ivy’s life to inspire this kind of dedication?
An important person in her life lost a limb at a time when Ivy was making decisions about her future. It had a profound impact on her and became the impetus for her career choices.
FF: What also inspired you to center the novel around this issue?
While in college, I had a job in the bioengineering department at Clemson. Prosthetic development is an area many bioengineers work in and was the perfect fit for Dr. Ivy Collins. I knew Ivy would be both a researcher and a businesswoman, and I loved the idea of her having such a personal connection to her work. Additionally, during my research I learned more than I ever wanted to know about ransomware—a very real crime that is investigated by both the US Secret Service and the FBI. The story took shape from there.
FF: What connects each book in the Defend and Protect Series? Are there any common themes?
All the books in the series focus on the agents located in the Raleigh, NC, resident office of the US Secret Service and focus on themes of forgiveness, trust, and redemption. Malicious Intent focuses on Special Agent Gil Dixon and Dr. Ivy Collins, with Special Agents Luke Powell, Zane Thacker, Tessa Reed, and FBI Special Agent Faith Malone returning from the first book in the series to round out the cast.
FF: What is one thing you hope readers can take away from Malicious Intent?
That while being a follower of Christ does not mean you’ll have a life without trials, there is hope and beauty in the life God has planned for each of us. It just may take a while for us to see it come to fruition!
FF: How do you keep your romantic suspense stories fresh with new ideas?
I’m always amazed by the way life experiences, books, research, and rabbit trails merge to generate new ideas. I usually find it difficult to pin down one specific thing that generated an idea because it’s all connected. Malicious Intent came about because of work I did two decades ago and research I did two years ago.
FF: What other projects are you currently working on?
I’m writing the third book in this series, as well as a novella connected to the series that I think readers will love!
Defend and Protect Series #2
Lynn H. Blackburn
Genres: Mystery/Suspense, Romantic Suspense
Release Date: March 1, 2022
Dr. Ivy Collins, founder and CEO of Hedera, Inc., is ready to begin clinical trials of her company’s cutting-edge prosthetic. Her work has been heralded by government, medical, and advocacy groups and everyone hopes the device will be a success. Well, almost everyone. Someone is trying to sabotage Hedera and the launch, but to what purpose–and how far will they go to get what they want?
Meanwhile, U.S. Secret Service Agent Gil Dixon can’t believe he’s finally been reunited with Ivy, his childhood best friend. Now that he’s found her again, Gil intends to spend the rest of his life with her. But it will take all his skill to uncover the truth in time to save Ivy’s life’s work, her own life, and the innocent lives caught in the crossfire.
Buy Malicious Intent from the FF Store HERE!
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