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Monster    by Jonathan Kellerman order for
by Jonathan Kellerman
Order:  USA  Can
Ballantine, 2008 (1998)
Hardcover, Paperback, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

I thought I had read all of Jonathon Kellerman's mystery novels. To my delight, I discovered Monster, first published in 1998.

How can a non-functioning psychotic, locked in a secure institution for homicidal madmen, predict murders in the outside world? A true dilemma, which brings psychologist Alex Delaware and Detective Milo Sturgis together again to investigate the death of a psychologist working in the institution and to prevent any more killings. The patient known as Monster is incarcerated because he has been accused of killing a whole family - mother, father, and two small children - as well as his own mother.

Monster is non-communicative. No one knows what sparked this otherwise quirky but harmless man to commit such brutal murders. When the doctor is murdered, Alex and Milo are called in to determine if Monster is capable of warning of other murders. And if so, how? The staff at the institution is a group to be watched closely. Some of them are downright unpleasant. And always on the watch to cover their own backs. Not from the inmates, but from their own wrongdoing.

As always, Kellerman keeps his readers on the edge of their seats. Tension builds with every page. Kellerman's day job is evident he's a child psychologist who brings his expertise to his novels. The plot takes a twisted road and must be closely monitored. Worth the effort. Great plot, great characters good and bad. Well worth a read.

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