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PUNISH THE DEED by Diane Fanning


by Diane Fanning

Pub Date: March 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-7278-6707-0
Publisher: Severn House

A serial killer targets do-gooders.

Greensboro Homicide investigator Lucinda Pierce, still wary of the reconstructive surgery that’s been recommended to realign facial features mangled in the line of duty, is called in when Sharon Fleming, executive director of Communities in Schools, is found butchered, each of her fingers broken and repositioned postmortem. Another murder with a similar pattern, this time in nearby Washington, D.C., brings FBI Special Agent Jake Lovett on board. The crime-fighting duo promptly get down to business, tentatively flirting while searching for clues. Two that Lucinda ignores are the notes left on her windshield, even the one that says “I was left behind,” and the silver Honda in her rearview mirror. Then a prior murder in Maine comes to light, complete with broken fingers, I-was-left-behind note and a victim from the nonprofit sector, and Lucinda and Jake alert care-workers that they may be in a killer’s sights. When their prediction proves true for charity dental technicians who become hostages, it’s up to Lucinda to effect a rescue.

Heavy on the clichés, but Lucinda (The Trophy Exchange, 2008, etc.), who stoically ignores ugly taunts about her facial deformities, fends off both an armed serial killer and an even better armed underling’s wife with so little effort that she surely qualifies for superhero status.