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By Michael Simmon

Penguin (Non-Classics) September 6, 2005 (Paperback)
ISBN: 0143035312

Reviewed by Susan Johnson

The year is 1988. The city Austin, Texas. Homicide Detective Dan Reles is going through the worst time of his life. His partner, Joey recently dead in a fiery crash, Dan has spiraled completely out of control. After resorting to drink to dull the pain he was placed on suspension. He is back, but on probation and with a desperate need to prove himself, not only to his superiors but to himself.

When Dan is sent to a traffic accident where the young man, a college student is hit and killed, Dan wanders away from the immediate scene in search of evidence and makes a far more gruesome discovery. The torso of a badly mutilated body.

Dan no sooner begins to investigate when remaining body parts are delivered to several of the cities wealthiest and most influential men. Dan works hard and long at discovering who the dead woman is and why she is being delivered this way.

Also woven in is the story of college student and how his friend feels this was not an accident but a conspiracy to shut him up. Dan is also hopelessly in love with his partner's wife, but pulled apart because he feels she had some responsibility in his death.

This was the first book I had read by this author but I loved the dark and gritty style. The main character made some bad judgment calls but that is just real life. I would enjoy more work by this author.

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