INTO THE DARK
By Rick Mofina
Harlequin, June, 2013 ($7.99)
Reviewed by Shirley Wetzel
Claire Bowen survived a horrific childhood and an abusive marriage. Now her life is looking up. She has a private practice in Los Angeles, counseling women who are in troubled relationships, and she is helping them to have better lives. Her second husband Robert, a pilot, is loving and supportive. The only thing keeping her from complete happiness is her inability to carry a pregnancy to full term, but a new doctor offers hope on that front.
Homicide detective Joe Tanner is mourning the death of his wife, and doing his best to be a good father to his young daughter. He is investigating cold cases, and makes a staggering discovery. The seemingly unconnected murders of five young women in the recent past were almost certainly committed by the same person. Even though he has been inactive for the last five years, he left a message that he was not done.
Mark Harding, a British transplant, is a journalist for a global wire service. He's looking for the story that will make his career. Hoping for something more than another Hollywood exposť, he had contacted law enforcement agencies, looking for a juicy crime story. Joe Tanner hands him far more than he could ever have imagined, a serial killer on the level of Son of Sam or the Zodiac Killer. Mark's story briefly stirs up some interest, then fades back into obscurity. Someone did notice, though — the Dark Wind Killer lets Harding, and the world, know he is back in business.
One of Claire's patients, Amber, is ready to leave her abusive husband and start a new life, but he is not letting her go easily. When Amber disappears, her husband is the prime, and only, suspect. Claire is stunned to learn that the police believe Amber could be a victim of the Dark Wind killer, and that her other patients might be in danger too. She is racked with guilt, thinking that if she'd been more effective in dealing with Amber's husband none of this would have happened.
Events build rapidly, with each of the three main characters having a piece of the story that must be brought together to stop the ruthless killer. The author skillfully spins the plot, weaving the strands together into an explosive climax. The revelation of the identity of the killer is brilliant and unforgettable. Mr. Mofina has written a spine-tingling, blood-chilling thriller, sure to keep readers on the edge of their seat. Highly recommended.
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