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Last to Die    by Kate Brady order for
Last to Die
by Kate Brady
Order:  USA  Can
Forever, 2010 (2010)
* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Still trying to come to terms with the recent suicide of her father - whom she alternately loved and hated for being a dirty cop - Detective Dani Cole is called in to investigate the grisly murder of a former prostitute named Rosie. Dani had helped the lost and troubled young woman out of her dark world and toward a promising new life and is determined to put away the killer. She also feels she has a lot to prove: to herself, to her dead father and especially to Internal Affairs who've made it no secret that they suspect Dani of being dirty.

Dani's investigation into Rosie's murder soon has her crossing paths with her teenage flame, Mitch Sheridan. The renowned photojournalist has only recently returned from Europe, where he went through a lengthy recuperation from injuries sustained while covering the fighting in Afghanistan. One of the suspects in Rosie's murder turns out to be Mitch's close friend and mentor, Russel Sanders, the director of Mitch's art foundation. When Russel also turns up dead the investigation shifts to a new and increasingly dangerous direction - one that puts both Dani and Mitch right in the crosshairs of a killer desperate to guard family secrets.

As she did in her compelling debut novel, One Scream Away, Brady takes another standard thriller plotline and tosses in enough compelling twists, turns and characterizations to keep readers briskly turning pages. Unfortunately, the somewhat closed-off Mitch isn't as initially engaging as the hard-nosed and independent Dani. But as the story progresses and Brady unravels the couple's difficult and poignant back-story, my attitude toward him changed. The villain is also a multi-layered and troubled soul whose shocking past puts a very surprising twist to the story.

Last to Die is another solid and engaging romantic suspense by an author whose star is definitely on the rise.

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