|By Kate Brady|
A ruthless killer hides in plain sight, someone no one believes is capable of murder. Within a week, six women will be murdered, all punished for their dark pasts. Detective Dani Cole is determined to track down this serial killer whose victims include a young woman she pulled out of a life of crime. Her investigation leads her to a photography foundation and the renowned photographer Mitch Sheridan, a man she she fell in love with years ago but has tried to forget. Dani and Mitch are instantly attracted to each other again, though their troubled pasts keep them from getting too close. Together, through the course of the investigation, they unearth a dark chain of deception that leads to a killer who is closer than they think.
Last To Die is a thrilling romantic suspense that had me hooked from the opening scene. Dani Cole and Mitch Sheridan were once teenage lovers torn apart by grief and pride. Eighteen years later, Dani, now a police detective, and Mitch, a photojournalist, are reunited to stop a serial killer targeting teenage prostitutes. When the murders are linked to Mitch's Foundation for Photojournalism, Dani and Mitch uncover a black market adoption ring and a web of deceit, heartbreak and lost innocence. With time running out they must stop the killer before Dani becomes the last victim. I want to keep my plot summary very brief because I don't want to reveal any spoilers of this suspenseful story. The plot was well-crafted with exciting twists and subplots that kept me turning the pages. Even when the killer's identity was revealed about half-way, the sad and chilling motivation behind the murders wasn't revealed until the end.
Along with the exciting plot, the characters and their complex relationships were compelling. Even secondary characters including the deceased girls had great depth. No one was just glossed over. Dani and Mitch are both flawed individuals haunted by tragic events from their childhoods and much of their adult lives. When they come together again after 18 years apart, the chemistry between them is tangible, yet it takes awhile for them to break down the walls they've built to protect themselves. Dani was the highlight of the story for me. She was damaged yet very strong, determined and smart. At the same time, she wasn't afraid to show her softer side to Mitch and allow him to help her. And the killer...dreadful, deranged, evil, psychotic, yet at the end, when everything came out, in a small way I actually felt bad for this individual! I certainly became submerged in the lives of these people, and I hated to see the story end. Last To Die is the follow up to Kate Brady's first book One Scream Away, but it can be read as a stand-alone novel without problems. I have not read the first book yet, and I never felt lost. Since I loved this one so much, I will be reading One Scream Away very soon.
Review copy courtesy of the publisher.