Killing Season
by Kellerman, Faye

While investigating his sister's death, Ben Vicksburg sees patterns that don't fit and clues similar to other unsolved murders in the evidence, but his obsession leads the police to suspect him and makes him a target of the real killer.

Ben, 17, is looking for the person who murdered his sister three years ago. Sam Shanks, the homicide cop who's been on the case since the beginning, believed for a long time that the girl had fallen victim to a serial killer known as the Demon, but Ben's tireless investigation has turned up clues suggesting his sister was killed by someone else, identity unknown. Soon Ben finds himself the target of a ruthless killer, and there may be nothing Sam can do to protect the boy. Kellerman delivers a great story, some fine characters, and a disquieting, look-over-your-shoulder atmosphere that should keep readers turning the pages as fast as they can. There's also a rather touching plot thread involving Ben and a girl named Ro, who goes to Ben's school and whose interest in Ben both excites and confuses him. Is Ro harboring dark secrets, or is Ben just a teenager with an overactive imagination? Compelling and sharply written. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

A curious stand-alone from the creator of Rina Lazarus and Peter Decker (Bone Box, 2017, etc.): a New Mexico teen tracks down clues in the rape and strangling of his older sister three years ago while he faces the pressure and angst common to all high school seniors.The police have never solved the murder of Ellen Vicksburg. Detective Sam Shanks, of River Remez Homicide, suspected Tim Sanchez, who had a crush on Ellen, and tried to link her death to the work of Billy Ray Barnes, the Albuquerque Demon, to no avail. But Ellen's brother, Ben, has never given up. He's still surfing the web for material about similar homicides and meeting regularly with Shanks, who likes the boy but can't help wishing he'd go away. Ben's obsessive focus on his sister's death has naturally taken a toll on his social life, but with the arrival of Dorothy Majors from New York, things seem to take a new turn. Though she's nominally the girlfriend of football star JD Kirk, Ro reaches out to Ben repeate dly, sympathizing with his loss, taking him seriously in a way his other friends don't, and signaling that her liaison with JD is more a matter of status and convenience than genuine attraction. As Ben painstakingly gathers information he hopes will identify Ellen's killer, the turning points in his investigation are consistently linked to pivotal moments in his relationship with Ro: their quarrels, their rapprochements, their debates about the senior prom. The result is a peculiar amalgam of one-quarter amateur detective work and three-quarters high school romance, like a Stephenie Meyer epic with a serial killer substituting for the vampires. The mystery, with a forgettable killer whose most serious threat against the hero is slashing his tires, gets buried in the coming-of-age story. If you want to spend 700 pages revisiting the normal yet fraught rituals of adolescent romance, though, here's your chance. Copyright Kirkus 2017 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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