Third to Die
by Brennan, Allison

A disgraced detective teams up with an ambitious FBI special agent to prevent a cycle of murders by a killer who ended the life of a colleague's sister. By the author of the Lucy Kincaid series. 100,000 first printing.

The first in Brennan's new series features the FBI's Mobile Response Team (MRT), a new unit in which specialized agents are dispatched to assist local law-enforcement teams with highly sensitive cases. The MRT's first case is a doozy. A seemingly dormant serial killer known as the Triple Killer (he murders in threes, a new victim every three days) has reemerged in Liberty Lake, Washington. Detective Kara Quinn of the LAPD is on leave and back in her hometown when she comes across the body of the newest victim. Special Agent Matt Costa, the demanding head of the MRT, invites Quinn to join the investigation. As the team learns the killer's pattern, they race against the clock to find him before he kills again. This is a detail-heavy procedural, which slows down the plot a bit at points. However, the characters are interesting, with Costa and Quinn playing well off of one another. The dramatic ending wraps up the case, but it's only the beginning for the MRT, and fans will look forward to the next installment. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

In Brennan's (Nothing To Hide, 2019, etc.) new series launch, a hard-edged female LAPD undercover cop and an ambitious FBI special agent race to catch a serial killer before he strikes again. On paid administrative leave since an incident with a suspect went wrong, a restless Detective Kara Quinn is on an early morning run in her hometown of Liberty Lake, Washington, when she discovers the flayed corpse of a young nurse. In D.C., FBI Special Agent in Charge Mathias Costa is staffing the new Mobile Response Team, designed to cover rural areas underserved by law enforcement, when his boss assigns Matt and analyst Ryder Kim to Liberty Lake. The notorious Triple Killer, who murders three random victims, three days apart, every three years, has returned. With only six days to identify and catch the culprit, and only three days until he kills again, the team is "on a very tight clock." What should be on-the-edge-of-your-seat suspense turns into a slog marred by pedestrian prose ("she heard nothing except birds chirping..."), a convoluted plot slowed down by a focus on dull bureaucratic infighting, and flat character development. The sole exception is the vividly drawn K ara. Smart, angry, defensive, complicated, she fascinates both the reader and Matt ("Kara Quinn was different—and he couldn't put his finger on why"). Inside this bloated novel is a lean thriller starring a strong and damaged protagonist who's as compelling as Lisbeth Salander. Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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