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Die for Me    by Karen Rose order for
Die for Me
by Karen Rose
Order:  USA  Can
Grand Central, 2007 (2007)

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* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Archeologist Sophie Johannsen has no idea what she's getting into when she agrees to act as a consultant in a murder investigation. She's had years of experience unearthing artifacts but when the frozen ground that she, detective Vito Ciccotelli, and his forensic team are investigating reveals a mass gravesite, the true horror is only just beginning.

Sophie has no idea that the killer is someone she's in contact with each day at the Allbright museum. It's her enthusiastic expertise in medieval warfare and weaponry that heightens the killer's excitement and creative license as he meticulously researches and lures his victims for starring roles in specially designed death scenes. But as Sophie, Vito and his team of investigators begin cobbling clues together more rapidly than the killer anticipates, his rage knows no bounds. Sophie must pay for her betrayal just as the clever detective must pay for allowing himself to fall in love with the beautiful Amazon Queen whose final death screams will ultimately sound for the killer alone.

Rose has not only created another gut wrenching thriller in Die For Me, she's also gifted readers with two very appealing leads in Sophie and Vito. Both are carrying around plenty of personal and professional baggage, which adds depth to the story as they try to work through their various issues, as well as the new ones that arise once they act on their attraction.

The author has created a truly creepy villain, a sociopath whose murderous tendencies are right off the charts and whose motivation and ultimate agenda will literally make your skin crawl. Rose takes readers deep into his twisted and vindictive mindset as he meticulously and arrogantly moves forward with his horrifying endgame even after his scheme begins unraveling. At times the story becomes a bit overstated, but Rose's wonderful style, her pacing, her attention to detail, and her flair for creating an incredibly clever, yet also a truly disquieting plot cancels that out. Die For Me is arguably Rose's most harrowing romantic suspense and a must read for her ever-growing legion of fans.

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