The follow-up to Deeper Than the Dead (2009) begins in November 1986. The See-No-Evil killer’s trial is nearing when a woman’s mutilated body is found. Detective Tony Mendez and FBI profiler Vince Leone, along with Vince’s wife, Anne (who in the first book was nearly done in by the accused See-No-Evil killer), race to find the perpetrator before he kills someone else. The book is set a couple of decades later than Colleen McCullough’s Carmine Delmonico novels, but it shares the same premise. It’s a crime novel set in a time before computerized databases, instantaneous data sharing, and high-tech forensics. The story is well designed, although one of the big plot twists is very similar to twists in recent thrillers by Lisa Gardner and Linwood Barclay, and the characters are believable and (mostly) likable. Hoag does an excellent job of exploring how a shocking crime can affect a small community. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Hoag’s Night Sins cracked the New York Times bestseller list in 1995, and her next nine books followed suit. We make this one an odds-on favorite to extend the streak to 11 in a row. --David Pitt
Hoag delivers a pacy narrative and knows how to write convincing characters. -- Simon Shaw MAIL ON SUNDAY
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