Another great review from Gloria Feit.
This is the newest entry in the Taylor Jackson series, and picks up
several threads of earlier books. At the end of the prior book, “The
Immortals,” Dr. John Baldwin, Supervisory Special Agent and Taylor’s
fiancé, was about to attend a hearing into a case from his past, held
at FBI headquarters at Quantico. The aftermath of that hearing
resulted in his [hopefully temporary] suspension. But the tentacles
of that prior case extend well beyond that, to threaten Taylor’s
career and, indeed, her life and that of those nearest and dearest to
her. As the book opens, one of those is immediately apparent as Pete
(“Fitz”) Fitzgerald, Taylor’s dear friend who has been nothing less
than a father figure to her, has seen the love of his life, Sue,
murdered, and now lies in a hospital bed, grievously wounded
[something apparently called “enucleation,” but you’ll have to look
that one up yourself]. Taylor, a six-foot tall Metro Homicide
Lieutenant in Nashville, Tennessee, vows to prevent further fallout.
A serial killer, the self-styled “Pretender,” learned his deadly craft
at the feet of another character from past books, the Snow White
killer, is responsible for 26 known deaths as the tale begins, and has
in turn amassed several acolytes of his own, who at his behest have
now begun killing sprees across the US mimicking famous, or infamous,
serial killers of years past: the Boston Strangler, the NY killer
known as the Son of Sam, and the Zodiac Killer. This is all part of a
deadly cat-and-mouse game on his part, the ultimate prize being Taylor
Jackson. His identity, and the motive behind all this, is the biggest
mystery, beyond the fact that it is very, very personal.
In this novel the reader discovers that Baldwin has unsuspected
baggage that is about to complicate his and Taylor’s lives, but the
emphasis is, of course, on identifying and stopping the serial killer
who has targeted Taylor and those she loves, with the suspense
increasing as the inevitable confrontation comes closer. I felt that
the book could have benefited from some judicious editing, but
nonetheless found it a very enjoyable summer read.