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|Paperback, 3 Jul 2007||
In the world of books, nepotism can only take you so far. Jesse Kellerman has needed a couple of books to prove that hes not being published just because hes the son of Faye and Jonathan. But being the daughter of James Lee Burke -- possibly the greatest living writer of crime fiction in America -- Alafair Burke had the most challenging task of all, with a crushing load of expectation. Interestingly enough, she needed no period in which to find her feet; her Samantha Kincaid series hit the ground running, and she immediately establish her own writing identity, quirky and idiomatic though strikingly different from her father.
Dead Connection is her first standalone novel, and its a corker, moving with express train velocity. Two women are murdered in New York, both having been set up for dates via an online dating service. Their murderer has left indications connecting deaths of the two women, and Detective Ellie Hatcher finds herself transferred to t! he homicide task force to smoke out a killer with a lethal agenda. Also involved is larger-than-life detective Flann McIlroy, a cop intoxicated by the lure of publicity (shades of James Ellroys LA Confidential here, rather than the work of Alafair Burkes illustrious father). McIlroy sees Ellie as a crucial aid to nailing a man who wants to cut a bloody swathe through the lonely women of New York.
This is truly assured crime writing, crammed full of brio, and sporting two memorable protagonists.--Barry Forshaw