To the public, he's a hero: a brutal killer who targets sex offenders. To most of London's police force, he's the suspect in a gruesome, time-consuming case to be avoided. But to Detective Constable Maeve Kerrigan, he's a murderer—no matter the sins of his victims—and catching him is her job. Assigned to the case with the division's unreadable new DI, Josh Derwent, young and inexperienced Maeve is determined to prove she has what it takes to make it as a female in the tough world of the London police.
But for a killer who strikes with such spectacle, this one is proving remarkably elusive. And when Maeve learns his motive might be about exacting revenge, his acts of incredible violence move from abstract justice to the intensely personal, and become all the more terrifying. Unsure whom she can trust even within her own department and knowing her life is at stake, Maeve will have to decide how far she's willing to go to ensure justice is served.
Jane Casey's taut, brilliantly executed thriller will have readers on the edge of their seats from the opening chapter to the stunning conclusion.
London Det. Constable Maeve Kerrigan, introduced in Irish author Casey's series debut, The Burning (2011), should win plenty of new fans with this entertaining follow-up, an enticing mix of police work, romance, evildoers, sex, and sexism. Kerrigan's boss, Supt. Charles Godley, assigns her to work with Det. Insp. Josh Derwent on two murders that appear to be linked: both victims had convictions as sex offenders and both were tortured before being killed. Not only do more victims follow but the nature of the case also changes as the search for the missing young daughter of vicious mobster John Skinner becomes the focus of the investigation. Meanwhile, Kerrigan must deal with Derwent's almost constant put-downs and confusion about her on-again, off-again romance with Det. Constable Rob Langton. Casey surrounds Kerrigan, an appealing blend of confidence and self-doubt, with a large cast of well-drawn characters, including Godley and Skinner. Admirers of Elizabeth George's ensemble police mysteries will find a lot to like.