Sharp (Absence of Light, 2016, etc.) introduces an intriguing new character in her latest action-packed thriller.
Kelly Jacks works for McCarron Specialist Cleaning Services, a company that specializes in doing what nobody else wants to do: clean up the evidence of a crime after the police release the scene. But Kelly isn’t an ordinary cleaner. She just got out of prison after serving time for murder . Six years ago, she was accused of killing Callum Perry after she was found passed out at the bloody scene of his slaying. At the time, Kelly worked as a crime-scene specialist, and blood spatter analysis was her forte. And that’s why, when she cleans a bathroom where a very rich woman supposedly committed suicide by shooting herself, she notices discrepancies in the blood spatter pattern. She notifies her boss, Ray McCarron, who's a retired cop, and while she and her partner, a kid named Tyrone, wait for some word from the police, she meets the woman’s husband. Turns out, the police have closed the case, but Kelly still feels like there’s something wrong and doesn’t let it go. That starts a chain of events that involves a terrible beating for her boss, the murder of someone close to her, and a nosy detective named O’Neill hot on her trail. Kelly’s an interesting character—older, wiser, and tougher as a result of the six years she spent in prison for a crime she can’t remember. She’s determined to get to the bottom of everything that’s happening to her and the people around her but is up against forces she can’t possibly combat alone. The premise is interesting, but the book is marred by unlikely and abrupt, albeit convenient, alliances and lots of dithering on everyone’s parts about what to do next. This tale’s too long by at least a third.
Kelly Jacks is a real keeper in this book bursting with bondage, Russians, evil crime lords, and corruption.