An invitation written in blood...A madman is stalking women in the city. By the time his victims are found, they've been dismembered with careful precision, their limbs stacked into a gruesome pyramid and completely cleansed of every last drop of blood.
To catch a killer - or die next...Accustomed to working on the most grisly homicides, detective Frank Quinn's nerves don't rattle easily. But when the last names of the killer's victims spell out "Q-u-i-n-n", the veteran cop feels a chill run down his spine. Then a fresh victim is linked to the one woman Quinn can't stop desiring. Hunting down killers is what Quinn does best. But this time, Quinn is up against a psychopath that will test him as never before.
©2007 John Lutz; (P)2007 Books on Tape
"A very scary and suspenseful read." (Booklist)
"Lutz gives us further proof of his enormous talent for crafting great police fiction." (Publishers Weekly)
Some didn't like this book, but I am a huge John Lutz fan and this is one of his best in my opinion. The character Quinn is believable. Lutz has been around for a while and all of the books I have read so far are about retired cops coming out of retirement to work again. I am also a huge Michael Connelly fan (Harry Botch) and this is one of the reasons I like this author.
Some of the reviews for this book were not very flattering, but I took a chance on Scott Brick as the narrator. I thought it was a great book. Unlike some of the reviews, I found it very intriguing and easy to follow. Good "creepy" story!
I enjoyed this mystery and the narrator was great. His voice sent chills up my spine more than once as the suspenseful parts. I've read Lutz other books and this one has them beat.
Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Mom to his 11-year-old daughter.
I like John Sandford and this author is the closest to him that I've found. I couldn't decide between three and four stars and went with four as a result of great narration by Scott Brick. Some of the twists and turns of this novel were not believable but, hey, this is a work of fiction and we usually suspend reality when we listen to books in this genre. I thought the characters were interesting and the author made you care about some of them. How their lives crossed was a bit of a stretch and the conclusion of the book was somewhat anticlimactic. The author also could have mixed up Sherman's modus operandi a bit more. I've downloaded another book by Lutz and am hopeful that it garners four or five stars all by itself.
I will say I enjoyed this book and Scott Brick was amazing as usual. The relationship between mother and son was well developed. I would have liked to have seen Quinn do more to "catch the killer" instead of the killer simply falling from the sky. It seemed the book ran a bit out of steam at the end.
Not in this lifetime
Nope, his delivery reminded me of Arlo Guthrie doing Alice's Restaurant...Arlo was trying to be funny.
Disappointment and anger
This was an absolutely terrible book. I cannot understand how an editor in their right mind sent it to a publisher. I am not appalled by vivid descriptions of murders. I do get sick of the same unrealistic scenario being repeated in a book ad nauseum. Interesting imaginative characters, I really enjoy encountering in books. Illogical character development and wildly contrived plots just irritate me. Lutz had policemen behave in ways policemen never behave; a public defender claiming to working 'pro bona', a policewoman having an affair with a suspect; a father who hears that his daughter has met the suspect being more jealous than angry that his ex-lover had allowed that to happen. Horrible, horrible, horrible.
It's not clear what the intent of the author was in writing this book. Either he wanted to write a character study or had an editorial deadline and needed filler for his "mystery". There are endless ruminations by the characters that add nothing to the story and are so pointless that I eventually fast forwared through them. The detectives spend no time detecting but rather are inappropriate, obtuse and inept. An example is when the female detective becomes involved with a man who dated a dead woman. Her excuse for not being suspicious or investigating him is that would mean she is a cynic about men. When a man and woman present themselves as brother and mother to a killer, the lead detective does no investigation of them. He uses the mother as bait in a hotel room to catch the killer and when she asks for a shotgun, gives it to her. Even a civilian might wonder how safe that is.
It is a common albeit lazy method of plot advancement for a writer to make the bad guy omniscient and the good guy incompetent but in this book, the good guy never becomes competent. Nor does the writer.
This is the second audiobook by this author that I’ve listen to and both have left me questioning if I want to continue with any more of his books. In both cases the stories have interesting themes but things seem too slow and anticlimactic for a suspense type novel. Furthermore, the villains move through the story doing their evil with an unrealistic nearly supernatural ease.
This author does not seem to tell an intriguing story like the “earlier” Michael Connelly novels nor do they deliver the satirical comic wit of authors like Nelson DeMille. This is not a “bad” audiobook but definitely not one I’d listen to again.
With Lotsa Love from gaz regn
I'd recommend this book to ayone who might enjoy what seemed to me to e a parody of a hard-boiled cop vs serial killer story. The conversations were cynical beyond belief, and there are character inconsistencies throughout the book.
The story was fast paced and filled with tension, even though I found myself laughing out lous at some of the things that were said. I'm paraphrasing here, but there was one sentence that went something like, "She was average looking, but if she managed to grow much older in this lousy world of ours, there was a chance she'd be pretty one day."
Why is this world of ours so lousy? I don't know, but every character in this book seemed to agree with that premise.
And veryone in this book is also jaded; they all hate each other; they are tired of life, and none of them treats anyone else with even a modicum of respect. Still though, they are so over the top, they made me laugh, so . . .
Scott Brick did a great job of differentiating the characters, simply be giving each one of them a distinct accent and/or speech pattern. and he also gave me the impression that he was aware of how over the top this book is, so he read it with so much attitude that I swear I could see him laughing all the way home from the studio.
Despite everything I hated about this book, it kept me riveted to the story, and I've no doubt that I'll sample atr least one more of Lutz's books
Great story, well told and lots suspense.
Yes if they hadn't bought any other books featuring Quinn but as for buying more of them I'd tell them to keep in mind the phrase "a distinction without a difference".
Pearl Krasner's mother
Lutz's books featuring Detective Quinn are a good read or listen if you limit yourself to one. I won't be buying any more of them. If I have to listen how Federman's sleeve becomes unbuttoned and his fashion sense once again I'll go mad. The same descriptions of the main characters are used over and over again and remain unchanged in other books. The same repetitive plot as well: the villain is transformed into a serial killer by an earlier experience and must re-enact it and make it a contest against Quinn. I enjoyed the first book but then tedium set in, so no more for me.
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