N.H.I.: No Humans Involved by Ray Ellis
Ray Ellis introduces readers to Detective Nathan (Nate) Richards in his debut police procedural, NHI: No Humans Involved. Nate's faith is tested on multiple levels as he investigates the murder of a police officer, a teenager, and the ensuing slaughters of gang members. When his partner is shot while on a robbery call, Nate's faith is further tested. Nate's best friend, Amber, finds herself in harm's way, and Nate struggles to let the investigation proceed according to departmental policy. Using his extensive knowledge and experience as a police detective, Ellis creates a police procedural in which the investigative techniques and the office politics are quite realistic. NHI will pull the reader into the storyline and grab hold until the final page even when the reader disagrees with a character's choice. Ellis creates a cast of characters with varying beliefs and morals who are well-rounded and interesting. He avoids creating caricatures of "good" and "evil" by exploring the idea that all people have the potential for good and the potential for bad in them. In NHI, Ellis imparts a message of hope and acceptance through his characters, their trials, and their faith without becoming preachy.