My final review!!!! How thrilling!!! I read a few books that I didn’t review for various reasons, so I’m excited that I still made the 52! I wish I had something more exciting to say about this one.
A marginal actor is found dead in a car trunk, sawn in half. Months later, a psychologist at a hospital for the criminally insane is discovered murdered and mutilated in a tantalizingly similar way. When reports of an inmate’s incoherent ramblings begin to make frightening sense as predictions of yet more slayings, Delaware and Sturgis are drawn into a web of family secrets, vengeance, and manipulation–both inside the asylum and on the streets of L.A., where death, drugs, and sex are marketed as commodities.
This is an Alex Delaware novel, published in 1999. It’s a pretty solid mystery thriller with an interesting plot and characters. I have made my love for Jonathan Kellerman’s books quite clear (Deception and Devil’s Waltz reviews), and my one complaint about them is that they can be a bit too twisty and fall into bureaucratic conspiracy as a plot device too often. This book didn’t have either of those elements — it was straightforward detecting, with no red herrings or conspiracy theorizing which I appreciated.
What made this one interesting for me was seeing how Delaware is the star of this one (as opposed to Milo, who clearly becomes the real “star” of the series, as I discussed in the Deception review). Kellerman has written tons of these books, and the nuance of his characters continue to grow across novels, which I really like. Again, this was a solid thriller that I really enjoyed.