FBI profiler Maria Ruiz is done. Over a long career of being called in to consult on bizarre murders, she has chased the worst of humanity, scoured the depths of evil, and seen the limits of mortal justice. Once she finishes her last cases, she plans to leave the whole mess behind her.
When she connects two wide-ranging assignments, however, Ruiz knows that something strange is happening. She becomes convinced that she's following a mysterious assassin who stalks a series of high-profile targets: accused rapists and serial abusers, killers and corrupt politicians, all men who seemingly escaped justice. And as the bodies pile up, Ruiz comes closer and closer to catching the killer: an angel of death not from this world.
©2015 Erik Scott de Bie (P)2015 Tantor
The plot of this third novel in the Hellmaw universe was very intriguing, the main character felt well developed. The overall narrative made it feel like the real monsters in this world aren’t necessarily the demons that are hidden within it, but the humans themselves. It might sound like a slightly overused trope, but I still found it effective and thought provoking.
The author took on the impressive task of tackling several contemporary social issues: racial and sexual discrimination, trolling and cyber-bullying, discrimination against LGBTs, racial profiling, sexual harassment, and so on. This is a very commendable endeavor, but overall it felt like theses themes were permeating throughout every interaction between characters. This omnipresence felt somewhat heavy-handed and even a little preachy at times. Nevertheless, the story remains thought provoking, and makes us question who the true monsters are. I’m curious to see how this arc will fit into the whole Hellmaw world.
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