Release Date: 01/03/12
Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware returns in this ingenious and breathtakingly good psychological thriller. Not since Jack the Ripper has there been such a gruesome crime scene. One look at the victim's apartment turned charnel house is enough for Milo Sturgis to summon The Crime Reader. But even Alex Delaware's skills may be stymied when more slayings occur in the same ghastly fashion...with no apparent connection between them. The only clue left behind - a blank page bearing a question mark - seems to be both a menacing taunt and a cry for help from a killer baffled by his own lethal urges. This one will haunt The Crime Reader's waking life, and his darkest dreams, long after its end.
The problem with long running series is that at some point the reader starts to wonder if the author is a one trick pony as some of the tricks from previous tales are reused alongside leaving the reader wondering if the character has any other directions in which to travel emotionally alongside wondering when their luck will run out.
As such the author has to do their best to grab the reader with gripping story arcs, present challenges that the character has yet to overcome and also give the reader the emotional aspect to grab onto to keep their heart in their mouths as they turn the pages. What Jonathan does in this tale is give the reader a tale that achieves all of this but clearly lifts his game back to earlier tales as the story’s arc takes the reader on not only a physical rollercoaster but one that will leave them wondering where it will end.
Add to this some masterful touches with sleight of hand, some good twists and backed with a cracking understanding of pace backed with solid prose which will overall give the reader exactly what they want.