In this first-rate page-turner, an apparently ordinary man, who as a child was forced to play board games with his bullying father, vents his rage in murders that seem to occur without pattern or motivation and baffle the police. LAPD Homicide detective Jessie Drake catches on to the killer's methods (to the obvious dismay of some of her male colleagues on the force), but remains powerless to predict his next move. Quick cuts from the killer's premeditations to murder scenes and to Jessie's investigation build a palpable tension. Anthony Award-winning Krich ( Till Death Do Us Part ) adds deft explorations of Jessie's failed marriage, her difficult childhood and current family relationships, subtly comparing the emotional histories of many in the cast, from criminal to cop. Recognizable characters, accelerating action and an intriguing plot combine with an open-ended resolution of Jessie's personal life to comfort readers with the suggestion of future installments.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The psycho du jour is the Curare Killer, whose victims--there are nearly a dozen by the final fade-out--are determined by the moves in a popular board game that his nemesis, Detective Jessie Drake, dopes out a third of the way through Krich's hardcover debut. The use of the game-playing pattern passes belief, but it's more ingenious and compelling than anything else here. The police procedure and the suspense created by that other game between author and reader are competent enough, but the revelation that the killer was psychologically abused by his father is compounded by the news that Jessie was abused by her father too. Even the nephew who's visiting her has been abused--and Jessie's slowness in picking up the clues here doesn't bode well for her later career. Clever in its central conceit, though otherwise forgettable. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.