Top critical review
5 people found this helpful
on 16 April 2007
This is the tale of a serial killer who goes about his work with thought and style but when he's not quite as free to murder who, where and when he originally planned to, the sense of intrigue fades away and it takes much of the interest in the story with it. It's a rather stereotypical scenario involving an extremely wealthy family full of jealousies, tragedies and divided loyalties and enough potential suspects in the shapes of kingpins and widows, sons and daughters, in-laws and various hangers-on to satisfy those who enjoy working out who did it before the inevitable revelation. It's even possible that the butler did it, if you want a taste of the corniness, but for me the only thing I wanted to happen was to reach the end of the story, all 100+ chapters of it and probably 50 too many.
The goodies, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, are a pair of former government agents now working together as male/female partners in a small P.I. firm in a small Virginia town. They have appeared together previously in SPLIT SECOND, but one of the biggest flaws in the novel reviewed here is that they make a pretty uninteresting couple, certainly neither of them possesses the charisma or personality to carry a series and probably not even a stand-alone.
It's all a bit ho-hum in the end, a by-the-numbers murder mystery which might have been compelling 20 years ago but with so much crime fiction available today it doesn't really stack up against the best of the competition. It's OK but it's nothing special and doesn't break any new ground or old barriers. Something to pass the time on a long-haul flight perhaps, but not a contemporary crime classic by any stretch of the imagination - particularly if the genre of crime fiction is your favourite and you read a lot of it regularly.