Wednesday, October 16, 2013

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Welcome to newly revamped "What I'm Reading Wednesday" post and the first review of what I hope will be many posted here on Wednesdays.

The Last Kiss Goodbye by Karen Robards  (2nd in the Charlotte Stone series)

Blurb: Dr. Charlotte “Charlie” Stone has dedicated her career as a psychiatrist to exploring the darkest territory of all: the hearts and minds of serial killers. It’s a job she’s uniquely suited for, thanks to the secret talent that gives her an uncanny edge—Charlie can see dead people, whose tormented spirits cry out to her for the justice only she can provide. This blessing—or curse—gives Charlie the power to hunt down and catch madmen and murderers. It’s also turned her love life upside down by drawing her into a hopelessly passionate relationship with the lingering ghost of charismatic bad boy Michael Garland.

But there’s little time for romance with her supernatural suitor when murder comes pounding at Charlie’s door in the form of a terrified young woman fleeing a homicidal maniac. Saving her life places Charlie squarely in the cross-hairs of a sadistic predator nicknamed “the Gingerbread Man,” notorious for manipulating his victims like pawns in a deadly chess game. And now the queen this psychopath’s bent on capturing is Charlie. Refusal to play will only put more innocent lives in danger. Matching wits with this cunningly twisted opponent will require all of Charlie’s training and expert skills. But even with her devilish “guardian angel”—not to mention her favorite flesh-and-blood Fed, Tony Bartoli—watching her beautiful back, the Gingerbread Man’s horrifying grin might be the last thing Charlie ever sees.

Review:  This is a great follow up to the first book in the series, The Last Victim. It actually takes place a few days after the end of The Last Victim.  From the very first page to the last, this book is a page turner. I stayed up too late because I couldn't put the book down and got up too early just so I could read it before I went to work.

I was captivated by the relationship between Charlie and Michael. They are perfect foils for each other. Michael keeps Charlie from burying herself in her work. Charlie brings out the best in Michael, though he resists when he realizes what she's doing. Michael may be a convicted serial killer, but things he says and does makes Charlie start to question the verdict that found him guilty. Michael has always maintained his innocence but the evidence was overwhelming, resulting in him being sent to jail.

I also enjoyed the budding relationship between Charlie and FBI agent, Tony Bartoli. Tony is a dedicated agent who cares a great deal for Charlie. Charlie feels Tony is someone she could love, if only Michael would stop interfering in her love life and telling her Tony isn't for her.

The serial killer storyline was fantastic, carefully plotted and very believable. I was sure I knew who the killer was and was completely surprised (not in a bad way) when the killer was revealed.

Rating:  5 Stars

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