The Widow Taker

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Widow-Taker: A Detective Pete Nazareth Novel (Detective Pete Nazareth Series Book 1)

Last Free Dates: 6th Mar 18 to 10th Mar 18
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...It is more suspense thriller than police procedural, but would appeal to readers of either genre. Crime readers won’t regret taking time out to read it, but it is probably not for action fans, more for suspense readers....

A murderer is killing widows in up-state New York. For homicide detective Detective Pete Nazareth this is yet another case, but with his partner’s death promoting him in a way he never wanted, the weight of it is now entirely on his shoulders…

A suspenseful crime story, focusing on the investigation and the murderers inner thoughts, “The Widow-Taker” uses the formula of one chapter in first from the killer’s point of view, and one in third-person about the investigation. This is becoming a little standard, but I don’t mind it when it is done well, as it is here. The writing is functional, conveying information without repetition and keeping a nice pace throughout. The killer manages to have a distinct voice and style in his sections, compared to the investigation sections, and the author uses this to really give us a view into who he is.

We only see the officers on duty, and they are all competent and task-focused. As this is a book about a case, it does make a nice change from the semi-competent, usually drunk, detectives that have become cliché and for once I am not left wondering why they haven’t been fired. Unfortunately this does mean their characters come off as very similar in places, and getting a feel for them as people or distinct personalities can be hard as we don’t see much of their lives off-duty.

The plot moves along nicely, and the investigation actually proceeds logically and cautiously. It is an extremely believable story. I particularly appreciated the effort taken to tie up all the loose ends neatly, although I do find it hard to believe the killer’s flat was never searched after his death (and yes a search would have included the location in question).

It isn’t a bad book, but it didn’t strike me that there isn’t much to make it stand out from other crime thrillers. As one of a series I would expect the characters to develop if you read more of the books and, for people who enjoy crime thrillers with competent leads, it is an ideal read.

It is more suspense thriller than police procedural, but would appeal to readers of either genre. Crime readers won’t regret taking time out to read it, but it is probably not for action fans as it is far more set-up and careful planning rather than pulse-pounding action.

Rating: 3
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