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Full of horrific violence, this solid third thriller to feature scarred FBI agent Smoky Barrett (after The Face of Death) shows that McFadyen knows how to shock. When the FBI director calls Smoky to Washington, D.C., to inspect the body of a beautiful young woman stabbed to death aboard an airplane, Smoky can't figure out why she's been assigned a case so far outside her L.A. jurisdiction. But when Smoky learns that not only was the victim, Lisa Reid, the child of a powerful Democratic senator but also that "she" was a pre-op transsexual, Smoky realizes that this is more than a bizarre homicide. Smoky and her team soon get on the trail of the man they dub "the Preacher," a sin collector who murders people to obtain their darkest secrets. Harboring secrets of her own, Smoky must stay one step ahead of the killer if she's to bring him down. The forays into the victims' minds to expose their "secrets" are unnecessary, but the formidable Smoky makes up for the occasional plot tangent. (Oct.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.