Monday, September 7, 2009

BLOOD GAME by Iris Johansen

by Iris Johansen
St. Martin’s Press
175 5th Ave. New York, NY 10010.
ISBN: 9780312368128

Forensic sculptor Eve Duncan has dealt with evil killers before but Kevin Jelak is by far the worst. Jelak believes that if he consumes enough “rich” blood from strong women, he will become a vampiric god. Targeting Eve as the one woman whose blood will ensure eternal life, he leaves a goblet of blood in Eve’s refrigerator and begins playing the blood game with her. But first he must reach the proper level to receive her blood, so in the interim kills young women. When Jelak murders a Senator’s daughter, Eve’s lover, detective Joe Quinn is drawn into the hunt for Jelak. Joe is acting strange and Eve can’t figure out why and worries Joe is growing tired of her obsessive need to find the killer of her daughter years before. Seth Caleb joins the hunt, claiming he is attuned to Jalek and has been tracking him for years. Joe is reluctant at first to allow his help but eventually realizes Caleb has a connection to Jelak. But will either man find Jalek before he takes from Eve what he feels he deserves?

This latest in the Eve Duncan Forensic Thriller series touches on the paranormal through one of its primary characters. Jelak is deliciously evil and Johansen does a good job relaying his unstable mindset. Eve and Joe are interesting characters, both independent and strong and realistically portrayed as a couple. Seth Caleb is intriguing and adds dimension. Forensics takes a bit of a back seat with this thriller, but this does not detract from an exciting, suspenseful read.

No comments: