Ballantine, 2004 (2004)
Reviewed by Rashmi Srinivas
t all began as a game to pass the time. Three prisoners each made a hit list of three people they most wanted dead. Then, inspired by Hollywood, each took three names from one of the others, to confuse the trail. One was released and took the bargain seriously enough to start killing in
. Of course, the second prisoner felt compelled to return the favor in
. Now all that remains is for the third, Archer Lowell, to fulfill his part in this unholy bargain. Will he succeed?
BI Special Agent Miranda Cahill has been on this case from the beginning. With some help, she has pieced together this twisted scenario as accurately as is possible without a shred of proof, and knows what Lowell is expected to do. What she doesn't know is who exactly is on his
list. When Lowell gives the cops a slip, Miranda and fellow agent (also on-again-off-again lover) Will Fletcher engage in a desperate race against time to identify the intended victims before it's too late. Unbeknownst to them, Miranda is herself on the hit list.
espite the author's crisp summaries, I recommend reading the series in order, to make sense of the sub-plots, relationships and resultant undercurrents.
continues from where
left off and the suspense, tension and mystery are all bigger and somewhat better, than before. The race against time is nail-biting tense, and an ongoing sub-plot about rescuing a young girl from a cult adds to the excitement. Despite the identity of the killer being known, Stewart twists the plot constantly.
ariah Stewart brings her
trilogy to a satisfying conclusion in
, which is well-plotted, imaginative and entertaining.
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