Book Review: Spent Identity

Welcome to the iReads Book Tour for the Annalisse Series! Today we are featuring Book 2 Spent Identity!

Spent Identity


To find her missing aunt, she has to unearth the secrets of the past. But lies and deceit run though the very heart of their town…

What started out as a promising relationship with adventurer and tycoon Alec Zavos has fizzled into an uncertain future for antiquities expert Annalisse Drury. Returning to Walker Farm in Upstate New York to see her Aunt Kate should have been a welcome homecoming and distraction. Instead, she finds the childhood home she expected to inherit is for sale, without her permission. What’s worse, Kate’s ranch manager makes a gruesome discovery in the barn: the body of an unidentified man, dead by foul play.

Annalisse turns in Alec’s direction for help. She and her aunt shelter on his estate in the Catskills while the authorities canvass the scene. But when Kate herself disappears without a trace, Annalisse fears the worst: that one of the many secrets of her hometown has ensnared her family—a secret someone is willing to kill for to keep hidden.

Review of Spent Identity

Check out our Book Review of Stolen Obsession (Book 1 in the Annalisse Series)

Let me tell you 6 reasons that this book should be on your 2023 reading list: 

  • The way it keeps you turning the pages. Marlene M. Bell did a fantastic job with the pacing in this book, and I literally could not put it down.  
  • The Character Development. Annalisse grows so much in this book, and attitude really shines through; and the “bad guys” are done well too! 
  • As the genre implies, this book has a really good romantic suspense element to it. The dynamics between Annalisse and Alex are really an interesting combination. 
  • The detailed descriptions. I loved how Marlene M. Bell gave you the little details that made this story come alive in your mind. 
  • The way everything was laid out. It was easy to follow, and I so enjoyed the hints and clues Marlene M. Bell dropped through the story. 
  • The Action. I mean come on, there was murder, kidnapping, extortion, travel, a dash of romance… What more could you ask for in a mystery?  

Overall, this story was fantastic. I truly enjoyed the way Marlene M. Bell drove into this story and how she laid everything out. The characters were compelling, a bit flawed, and you got a better sense of who they are in this book.  

I am very much looking forward to reading book three! 

Marlene M. Bell is an eclectic mystery writer, artist, photographer, and she raises sheep in beautiful East Texas with her husband, Gregg, three cats and a flock of horned Dorset sheep.

The Annalisse series has received numerous honors including the Independent Press Award for Best Mystery (Spent Identity,) and FAPA— Florida Author’s President’s Gold Award for two other installments, (Stolen Obsession and Scattered Legacy.) Her mysteries with a touch of romance are found at She also offers the first of her children’s picture books, Mia and Nattie: One Great Team! Based on true events from the Bell’s ranch. The simple text and illustrations are a touching tribute of compassion and love between a little girl and her lamb.

Connect with the Author:  
website ~ website ~ twitter ~ facebook instagram ~ goodreads

See our Guest Post From Marlene M. Bell on How to Make Your Novel Stand Out


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  1. My! What a nice review of Spent Identity. Yes, Annalisse is flawed and has a hard time making decisions of the heart. Eventually she comes around, just not too soon in the series! Thank you for reading each installment in the Annalisse series. I hope you find the next two books enjoyable too ~

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