Darkness,My Old Friend (The Hollows #2) by Lisa Unger

Book Description:

Published: June 26, 2012

Format: Audio/OverDrive

Stars: 4

New York Times bestselling author Lisa Unger returns to The Hollows in this “gripping psychological thriller” (Publishers Weekly) that uses the fears found in everyday life to keep readers up all night. “This is one book that will have you racing to the last page, only to have you wishing the ride wasn’t over.” (Michael Connelly, #1 New York Times bestselling author)

After giving up his post at the Hollows Police Department, Jones Cooper is at loose ends. He is having trouble facing a horrible event from his past and finding a second act. He’s in therapy. Then, on a brisk October morning, he has a visitor. Eloise Montgomery, the psychic who plays a key role in Fragile, comes to him with predictions about his future, some of them dire.

Michael Holt, a young man who grew up in The Hollows, has returned looking for answers about his mother, who went missing many years earlier. He has hired local PI Ray Muldune and psychic Eloise Montgomery to help him solve the mystery that has haunted him. What he finds might be his undoing.

Fifteen-year-old Willow Graves is exiled to The Hollows from Manhattan when six months earlier she moved to the quiet town with her novelist mother after a bitter divorce.  Willow is acting out, spending time with kids that bring out the worst in her. And when things get hard, she has a tendency to run away–a predilection that might lead her to dark places.

Review –

“Bethany Graves and her teenage daughter, Willow, moved to The Hollows from New York City when the bestselling novelist divorced Willow’s stepfather, a shallow, self-absorbed plastic surgeon. Thinking that the experience of small-town living might provide a cure for Willow’s recent penchant of lying about everything, Beth settles into writing another book. She also jumps back into the dating game with Willow’s high-school principal, Henry Ivy, a nice, nerdy sort of guy who has been nursing a secret for many years. But then, this is The Hollows, and everyone has some sort of secret in his past, including Jones Cooper, the retired cop resurrected from a previous novel. Jones has been doing odd jobs for the neighbors since he left from the force. Now, instead of chasing bad guys, he feeds the neighborhood cats and lets the repairman in while the neighbor’s at work. But soon a former colleague comes calling and wants his help with a cold case, and a young mother seeks him out to find the missing mom of a classmate of Willow’s. Before Jones knows it, he is back in the investigations business, but a local psychic warns him that she has seen a terrible vision involving him and, if her predictions hold true, this could be Jones’ last case ever. Unger introduces a dizzying number of characters who seem to have little, if anything, in common except for their location, but manages to tie them all neatly together. Although the outcome is not exactly a shocker since Unger sprinkles clues like breadcrumbs along the way, it’s a satisfying story with an eclectic and interesting cast of characters and believable dialogue. Unger shows her usual deftness at intricate plotting and explores the mother-child relationship from multiple angles, but too often refers to back story from a previous novel without explanation. That tendency often leaves readers wondering if they missed something along the way.” Kirkus Review

Even though Jones isn’t on the police department any longer – don’t count him out. I loved how he is determined to make his recent derailment from life count as he plots a new way for himself. I also love how we find out more about Henry’s backstory which adds to the interesting friendship of people in the Hollows.

 

Cold Blooded (New Orleans #2) by Lisa Jackson

Book Description:

Published:  June 1, 2002

Format: Audio/Audible

His Vengeance Will Be Repeated. . .

A woman’s slashed, incinerated corpse is found in a seedy New Orleans apartment. Her killer is certain there were no witnesses, unaware that his every move was seen by a beautiful stranger–from her bed in a bayou cottage on the outskirts of town. . .

And Repeated. . .

Weeks later, another violent vision shatters Olivia Bechet’s sleep. Convinced a serial killer is stalking the city, Olivia turns to the authorities. But jaded detective Rick Bentz doesn’t believe her–even when a second body turns up, slain in exactly the same bizarre, ritualistic manner Olivia described. . .

And Repeated. . .

As New Orleans panics in the icy grip of a merciless killer, Olivia is frustrated by Bentz’s skepticism–and captivated by her attraction to him. But soon her dreams are invaded by images of another murder. One that has yet to be committed. This time, Olivia recognizes not only the victim’s face–but the murderer’s. And both are closer than she ever imagined. . .

Review –

Another serial killer is wreaking havoc in New Orleans, ( it seems to be the serial killer capital of the world) and it’s up to detectives Rick Bentz and Reuben Montoya, the protagonists from Jackson’s previous thriller, Hot Blooded, to catch him. This time around, the detectives are joined by Olivia Benchet, a reluctant psychic who hails from a highly dysfunctional family. Olivia’s visions of a priestly killer who tortures and sacrifices young females provide Bentz and Montoya with their best clues, but Olivia may be the next victim if Bentz doesn’t shrug off his cynicism concerning visions and romantic entanglements with the wild-haired psychic. Twice burned by his former wife, who had an affair with his half-brother, Bentz now lives for work and his rebellious, nineteen year-old daughter, Kristi. The hunt for the murderer escalates when Olivia realizes her visions are a two-way mirror, and the killer has Kristi and Olivia in his sights. Jackson’s sanctimonious serial killer, who refers to himself as The Chosen One, is predictable, but the dynamics between her protagonists, particularly between Bentz and Olivia, are a welcome counterpoint to the violent action. Although some readers may be repulsed by the killer’s sexually sadistic crimes, which are depicted in graphic detail, others will be intrigued by the authors portrayal of the abominations that result when faith and family are perverted. 

Five stars!!!!