From Library Journal
Lovett's third Sylvia Strange thriller (following Acquired Motives, LJ 9/1/96 and Dangerous Attachments, LJ 5/1/95) pits the Santa Fe forensic psychologist against a sadistic, heroin-addicted hit man out to murder a child who knows too much. Called in to evaluate the disturbed, frightened girl, who has withdrawn into muteness, Strange forms a bond with her that leads to an international Mexican drug trafficking and money laundering ring and a murderer on death row. As the cases coalesce and the graphic violence escalates, Strange gets help from her almost affianced lover, New Mexico police officer Matt England. Lovett deftly juggles various plot lines, illuminating the gritty border drug wars, the cops on both sides of the legal fence, and the psychological threads. Despite a few loose ends, this should appeal to readers who like their thrillers gory, complex, and at a breakneck pace.? Francine Fialkoff, "Library Journal"
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Lovett's glittering, sharp-edged, gut-wrenching story reminds readers that easy answers are hard to find. A horrific car crash leaves a man dead and a 10-year-old girl mute and terrified. Forensic psychiatrist Sylvia Strange is called in on the off chance she can do what a team of talented physicians can't: get the child to talk. Eventually, Sylvia learns the child's name--Serena--and finds a few puzzling clues to her background. Then Sylvia discovers that Serena is linked to a death-row killer, a wealthy Santa Fe society matron, and a violent Mexican drug king. She also learns the child has been severely traumatized after witnessing her mother's death and that Serena's life--and now Sylvia's--may be in imminent danger. Sylvia is too fond of the child to abandon her in the face of such danger. Her only alternative is to try to protect Serena from the demons--real and imagined--that persecute her and find a way to bring her out of the living hell she has endured. This moving, mesmerizing story reveals a more humane and tender side of the enigmatic psychiatrist, adding depth to her character in the process. This must-have crime novel will hold particular appeal for fans of Patricia Cornwell. Emily Melton