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CUT, PASTE, KILL by Marshall Karp


by Marshall Karp

Pub Date: June 8th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-312-37822-6
Publisher: Minotaur

Lomax and Biggs go up against a killer who seems to be quite a cut-up.

Someone’s serving their own brand of justice in Los Angeles, and their definition involves punishing wrongdoers with scissors through the spleen and a scrapbook of each victim’s misdeeds accompanying the body. Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs (Flipping Out, 2009, etc.) think the murder they’re investigating is a one-off until their boss, Lt. Kilcullen, tells them it’s a serial investigation they’ll be working with the FBI. Lomax and Biggs are determined to beat the FBI to the punch to show what the LAPD is made of. Unfortunately, the city’s population looks as if it’s limited entirely to unsavory potential murder victims. Besides, what do two L.A. cops know about the subtleties of scrapbooking? In addition, the pair must deal with the distractions of their private lives: Lomax is in a happy romance with Diana, who may have a trick or two up her sleeve, and Biggs has been roped in to working with Lomax’s dad, Big Jim, on a screenplay for Semi-Justice. At the rate they’re going, their tale of truckers turned detectives may well be a bigger success than the actual case. Just when Karp seems to be on the verge of considering the moral dilemma of revenge killing, he swerves back to his preferred path of jokes and jibes.

The amusing byplay between the main characters moves the story along. It’s a shame that so much of the humor depends on juvenile stereotypes and mild bigotry.