Detective Marcella is called out of retirement (He’s 65 you know, although I would have never guessed that from the first book) by his old sidekick, hungry Carlos, to investigate a series of bizarre suicides linked to each other by various connections and the Paranormal Research Centre which was the epicentre of the last series of paranormal murders.
A new young detective, Spinelli, is introduced, as well as a new police station equipped with state of the art computer tech.
This is far more enjoyable than the original novel, which was beset by impausible motives and scenarios and introduced far too many characters all at once, many of whom didn’t survive long enough to become interesting.
Donovan seems to have found his feet here though (Yes, Dana E Donovan is a man. I hope he forgives me for mis-sexing him until I got to the author biography at the back) and returning characters seem far more fleshed out and developed. The plot is more complex and employs a couple of red herrings. It’s not perfect by any means, but it’s an enjoyable and engrossing read and I have already purchased the next in the series, so that’s all that matters really.
It’s a bit of a paradox this. Highly entertaining and engrossing, and at the same time quite ridiculous. It could have done with some editing to eliminate some minor problems. For instance, it is established very early on that members of a group of paranormal adepts that have regular meetings are being killed off one by one. One has to ask, if you were a member of that group, why would you attend the next meeting? One might also ask, given that they are gifted psychics, why they didn’t see all this coming?… but hey ho! It’s fun. It’s not Agatha Christie, but it’s a page turner, and I’m going to have to read the next one. You can’t say fairer than that.