The Last Place Mass Market Paperback – 4 Sep 2003
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"The Last Place is the first place readers should turn to for a superior story."--Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel
Lippman's "usual deft precision."..The Last Place "shouldn't be missed" !--Washington Post Book World
"Spectacular. . . . A fast, cleverly ellusive story."--New York Times Book Review
"Laura Lippman in her series featuring Baltimore private investigator Tess Monaghan just keeps getting better and better"--Houston Chronicle
Lippman, reporter for the Baltimore Sun, excels at vivid portraits of her town's offbeat neighborhoods, hangouts and inhabitants. Seen through the eyes of her protagonist--a smart, funny P.I. named Tess Monaghan--Baltimore is never dull--Seattle Times
"A major work of suspense."--Cleveland Plain Dealer
Lippman's "usual deft precision..".The Last Place "shouldn't be missed" !--Washington Post Book World
Laura Lippman in her series featuring Baltimore private investigator Tess Monaghan just keeps getting better and better --Houston Chronicle"
The Last Place is the first place readers should turn to for a superior story. --Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel"
Spectacular. . . . A fast, cleverly ellusive story. --New York Times Book Review"
A major work of suspense. --Cleveland Plain Dealer"
Lippman s usual deft precision ...The Last Place shouldn t be missed !--Washington Post Book World" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A serial killer the police believe is dead - until he finds a new victim to stalk: PI Tess Monaghan . . .See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
As with most heroines these days, when she says baldly that she can take of herself, you just know that something will happen to dispel that confidence. And so it does but, no matter, this is fiction and the author does well to entertain.
I don't fancy reading earlier books but I may well see if there is a book 8 and have another drop into Maryland society and history. Oh, I musn't forget Tess's anger management classes. Loved those, mostly; one woman's anger is another's direct action, I guess.
The rest of the book was equally good and all the guesses I made as to the outcome were wrong. I have now bought three more Tess Monaghan books and can recommend this one particularly. A bit of a way to go to equal Kinsey Millhone (Sue Grafton)but well on the way.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Tess is a private investigator with a past that haunts her. Her ex-boyfriend was killed years prior and she continues to suffer from occasional nightmares, reliving his death.
She has issues with anger management, which are portrayed quite well when she gets a little revenge on a potential child molester. She is arrested and sentenced to anger management counseling.
Tess's wealthy friend, Whitney, offers her a private investigator assignment which involves reviewing old, unsolved domestic abuse murder cases in order to help bring about lobbying for funding and training for small town cops handling domestic abuse situations. Whitney is part of a group of several non profit foundations that have joined together and are in search of ways to reduce the number of domestic-violence homicides in their state. Though Tess's old archenemy, Luisa O'Neal, is somewhat involved in the group, Tess accepts the assignment with the understanding that Luisa is not an active member of the board.
There is a list of five unsolved cases for Tess to investigate. She was not hired to search for the killer but rather to check into the specifics of the police investigations on each file.
Initially, the cases do not seem connected but then Tess begins to question whether or not they are in some way. She always begins to wonder if Luisa O'Neal had more involvement in this project than Tess was told about, or anyone was told, for that matter. Soon Tess is questioning everything and everyone looking for the link.
You will find yourself flipping back through the pages you've already read, checking details, looking for confirmation of the places the clues are leading you. Just when you think you're sure you know who the killer is, another clue is added that doesn't quite fit in and you are sent on your search again. You will be guessing until the end.
The Last Place is excellent. If you've never read her before, you are going to be surprised. Actually, if you've never read her before I would say go back to the beginning with Baltimore Blues because you need to read the progression of her character. Tess doesn't start off this tough as nails, sharp as a tack PI but as a reporter looking for work. Not only will you see the progression of the character but also the writer. Laura keeps getting better. With every book she takes what she learned from the last one and builds upon it. Her narration gets stronger, her descriptions more detailed, her plot tighter, and her books keep getting better. Laura knocks me side the head with each new novel and The Last Place is no exception.
Actually, it's better than that. I put this book down with a sense that I had just read something amazing and strong and the tip of an iceberg. I put this book down very pleased and for that I quite indebted to her. Thank you Ms. Lipman.
As a mystery on its own, it is powerful and extremely well written. I do hope Laura Lippman doesn't wait too long for another installment.
Tess meets up with an unlikely ally--a former Toll Facilities cop, Carl Dewitt, who is obsessed with one of the murders. When they compare notes, they realize they're dealing with an extraordinarily clever serial killer--and that Tess is his real target, but for an unknown reason.
As Tess and Carl investigate, sometimes cooperating with the state police, sometimes defying it, they start to realize that they're following a script only the killer knows, and he's always one step ahead of them. As she struggles with the fear and the mind games, Tess is also battling her own demons, forced on her by a court-ordered anger-management psychiatrist.
Author Laura Lippman's novel has that rare combination of character, action, intellectual puzzle and flashes of humor that blend for a first-rate mystery. This is not a feel-good book, though. It made me a little sad.
I thought Ms. Lippman did a great job presenting the personality and deranged thought process of the serial killer, juxtaposed against the inexorable logic of the private eyes determined to find him out. I thought the ending was justifiably exciting and violent, and quite satisfying. The author worked up to it in admirable fashion. I like Tess Monaghan as a protagonist. She's smart, practical, fun-loving, tough, sounds like a real person. Her boyfriend, Crow, however, comes across as a bit of a wimp and an airhead, and not quite up to her caliber. Their relationship seems almost entirely based on sex, which is hard to accept considering what a complex person Tess is.
The issues I had with the book, maybe because I enjoyed it as an audiobook rather than a read, are that I couldn't quite understand why the bad guy serial killer would want to get caught by revealing the list of his murders to Tess and why he would be stalking her in particular as she didn't fit the mold of one of his victims. It was necessary for the story to work but it didn't quite make sense from the point of view of "reality".
Minor issues. This book held my attention from the first page to the last.