At the start of British author Forbes's entertaining debut, a young woman falls to her death from the balcony of a dusty London church. Det. Insp. Mark Tartaglia and his team quickly discover that Gemma Kramer was lured there to meet a man calling himself Tom, who then delivered murder rather than the romantic suicide pact he promised. Searching the records, Tartaglia and his team uncover two of "Tom's" other victims, formerly classed as suicides, as well as a suspicious death his instinct tells him is linked. Following the clues from two additional murders, Tartaglia and partner Sam Donovan nearly become Tom's victims themselves just before discovering Tom's true identity. The explanation of the killer's motivation and MO isn't entirely satisfying, but this minor lapse aside, this is an intelligently plotted, convincing and nicely textured read. One hopes to see more of the appealing cast of well-characterized police personnel in a sequel. (Oct.)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Die with Meby Elena Forbes
When fourteen-year-old Gemma Kramer’s broken body is found on the floor of St. Sebastian’s Church, the official ruling is that she jumped to her death from the organ gallery above the altar. But then a witness comes forward claiming to have seen Gemma kissing a much older man before the two disappeared into the church together. And when the toxicology… See more details below
When fourteen-year-old Gemma Kramer’s broken body is found on the floor of St. Sebastian’s Church, the official ruling is that she jumped to her death from the organ gallery above the altar. But then a witness comes forward claiming to have seen Gemma kissing a much older man before the two disappeared into the church together. And when the toxicology report reveals traces of GHB and alcohol in her system, a full-scale murder investigation is launched.
At the helm is Detective Inspector Mark Tartaglia, a stubborn cop known for following his hunches. It’s Tartaglia’s first time in charge, and he walks right into a political minefield as the investigation turns up three more suspicious deaths — all involving vulnerable young women falling to their deaths, all initially ruled suicides.
In the whirlwind of conflicting theories from the media, criminal profilers, and cautious administrators, Tartaglia and his detectives must connect the dots between victims to find a serial killer with a chilling predilection for lonely girls and deadly heights.
Fourteen-year-old Gemma Kramer falls to her death from the gallery above the altar in St. Sebastian's Church. What appears to be suicide soon sparks a murder investigation when a witness claims to have seen Gemma kissing a man before her body was found. Detective Chief Inspector Carolyn Steele is brought in to supervise the team led by Detective Inspector Mark Tartaglia. But friction with the new chief leads to miscommunication and a difficult work environment. Despite some familiar plot elements (e.g., serial killers who go after the female police officer; a cold, misunderstood female chief inspector), debut novelist Forbes has written an engrossing police procedural that fans of Jill McGown and Ian Rankin will place on their reserve list. Highly recommended. Forbes lives in London.
Jo Ann Vicarel
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