Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Eleventh Victim by Nancy Grace

Yes, this book is written by THE Nancy Grace, the former prosecutor turned HLN host. Amazingly, she does a really good job writing this book. She obviously pulls much from her background as a prosecutor in order to write this interesting mystery and is quite credible.

Hailey Dean, the main character, is loosely based on Grace, both having had their fiancees murdered. She is a prosecutor in Atlanta, trying the case of a gruesome serial murderer who leaves as his calling card baker's quality twine, a special type that has to be ordered from France. His method of murder involves a 4-pronged poultry fork. Hailey wins the case and the murderer is sent to prison. When his death penalty appeal comes up, the politicians get involved which has disastrous consequences. Hailey has moved on after the case and is now a psychologist in New York City. Her patients begin turning up murdered in the same way the victims in Atlanta were and Hailey gets blamed.
I enjoyed the mystery part of the novel but some of it was quite disjointed and distracting. All the environmental stuff about St. Simon's island, while being tied in at the end, was too different from the main story and I felt that it disrupted the flow of the narrative. There were also parts of the story that left me hanging and scratching my head (the neighbor that she was dating and was suspicious of, what was all that about?) All in all, however, I thought that it was a good story. It wasn't too bad as far as language goes, the violence was, well, violent and gruesome and there were some sexual things that were a bit disturbing but it was far from the worst book I've read as far as cleanliness goes. I put it at a PG-16, definitely adult material but not of the worst kind.

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