Reviewed by Susan E. Richardson

Author Candace Calvert, a former ER nurse, offers a look into emergency medicine and emergency services with By Your Side, a Crisis Team novel set in Sacramento, California.

Sparks fly along with bullets when trauma nurse Macy Wynn and Deputy Fletcher Holt cross paths at a highway shooting. They clash over helping others vs. taking cover but feel drawn to each other. Events keep bringing them together as part of the crisis team when the sniper continues targeting victims.

Both Macy and Fletcher bring struggles into their budding relationship. Macy grew up in the foster care system, where she learned not to rely on anyone but herself. Fletcher came to California from Houston to help care for his mother during her fight with cancer. He’s used to fixing things himself, not relying on God.

The world of emergency services tends to be tight-knit. More nurses, ER physicians, police, and the hospital chaplains weave through the pattern of Macy and Fletcher’s days. Each tries to balance his or her work with the personal toll caring for others in crisis brings. Fear of the sniper adds a new layer of stress. In the end, Macy and Fletcher have to decide where their trust lies.

Readers who enjoy shows like ER will find By Your Side an excellent option. The book blends action/suspense and romance believably, and includes a strong Christian message without being preachy or forced.