Blog Tour: Third To Die by Allison Brennan

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I’m back today with my final review for the Harlequin Trade Publishing Winter Mystery/Thriller blog tour. I have loved all three books that I got to read and review and I can’t wait to see what they come out with later this year.

Blog Tour: Good Girls Lie by J.T. Ellison

Blog Tour: The Last Affair by Margot Hunt

9780778309444_RHC_PRD

The Third to Die : A Novel 

Allison Brennan

On Sale Date: February 4, 2020

9780778309444, 0778309444

Hardcover

$26.99 USD, $33.50 CAD

Fiction / Thrillers / Suspense 

464 pages

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About the Book:

New York Times bestselling author and gifted storyteller Allison Brennan’s new standalone thriller features a troubled female police detective and an ambitious FBI special agent who wind up at the center of a ticking-clock investigation into a diabolical serial killer.

Brennan’s novel will launch a book-a-year series featuring a fabulous cast of recurring characters. It’s the story of a troubled female police detective and an ambitious FBI special agent who wind up at the center of a ticking-clock investigation into a diabolical serial killer; and the bond they forge in this crucible sets the stage for the future books in the series.

Detective Kara Quinn is visiting her hometown of Liberty Lake, Washington, after being placed on administrative leave by the LAPD, when she comes upon the mutilated body of a young nurse during an early morning jog. The manner of death is clearly ritualistic; she calls it in. Meanwhile back in DC, special agent in charge Mattias Costa is meticulously staffing his newly-minted Mobile Response Team. One of his first recruits is the brilliant FBI forensic psychologist Catherine Jones. When word reaches Matt that the Washington state murder appears to be the work of the Triple Killer–it will be the first case for the MRT. Jones has done the only profile on this serial killer, but she is reluctant to join the unit, still shaken by the death of her sister a year ago under circumstances for which she holds herself responsible. But only she holds the key to understanding the killer’s obsessive pattern–three murder victims, three deep slashes a piece, each three days apart, each series beginning on a March 3rd–3/3, then a three-year hiatus before he strikes again.

This time they have a chance to stop him before he claims another victim strikes, but only if they can figure out who he is and where is is hiding.

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Review

I really enjoyed this Criminal Minds meets CSI crime thriller. The leader of the this new Mobile FBI group, Matt, was a fantastic character and I liked the conflict of him trying to be the leader of this group and catch the killer. Matt and the profiler in the group, Catherine, also have a history together with a traumatic back story that is not fully explained. Which I am guessing (and hoping!) gets explained in future books in this series. I also hope, as the series progresses, that we get to know the other members of the team better. They all specialize in different areas and I would love to see their perspective as they solve future crimes.

Another important character to this story is LAPD detective, Kara Quinn. She is on vacation in her hometown of Liberty Lake and quickly becomes wrapped up in the investigation. She is such a strong female character and I loved how unapologetic she is. I didn’t like how much her story took away from the Triple Killer but it does make sense in the full scope of the book.

We also get to read from the perspective of the Triple Killer and his perspective is fascinating in how he justifies and perceives himself. I watch, listen to, and read true crime because I am always captivated by the psychology of what would make a person do horrible things. So for me, this was one of the best aspects of the story. Brennan did a great job making him such a believable villain.

I really like the start of this series and where it is going. I feel like Brennan has left a few strings of story open and I am eager for the next book to see where she takes it. This book does have moments of repetitiveness but that is almost to be expected with a crime procedural. I still really enjoyed this and I cannot recommend enough to fellow crime thriller lovers. Also, like I mentioned at the beginning of my review, this book would be great for fans of Criminal Minds and CSI. If you still aren’t sure if you want to read this then keep scrolling for an excerpt of the first chapter.

Allison Brennan - photo credit Brittan Dodd

Social Links:

Author website: https://www.allisonbrennan.com/

Facebook: @AllisonBrennan

Twitter: @Allison_Brennan

Instagram: @abwrites

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/52527.Allison_Brennan

Excerpt

Wednesday, March 3 

Liberty Lake, Washington 

12:09 a.m.

Warm blood covered him.

His arms, up to his elbows, were slick with it. His clothing splattered with it. The knife—the blade that had taken his retribution—hung in his gloved hand by his side.

It was good. Very good.

He was almost done.

The killer stared at the blackness in front of him, his mind as silent and dark as the night. The water lapped gently at the banks of the lake. A faint swish swish swish as it rolled up and back, up and back, in the lightest of breezes.

He breathed in cold air; he exhaled steam.

Calm. Focused.

As the sounds and chill penetrated his subconscious, he moved into action. Staying here with the body would be foolish, even in the middle of the night.

He placed the knife carefully on a waist-high boulder, then removed his clothes. Jacket. Sweater. Undershirt. He stuffed them into a plastic bag. Took off his shoes. Socks. Pants. Boxers. Added them to the bag. He stood naked except for his gloves.

He tied the top of the plastic, then picked up the knife again and stabbed the bag multiple times. With strength that belied his lean frame, he threw the knife into the water. He couldn’t see where it fell; he barely heard the plunk.

Then he placed the bag in the lake and pushed it under, holding it beneath the surface to let the frigid water seep in. When the bag was saturated, he pulled it out and spun himself around as if he were throwing a shot put. He let go and the bag flew, hitting the water with a loud splash.

Even if the police found it—which he doubted they would— the water would destroy any evidence. He’d bought the clothes and shoes, even his underwear, at a discount store in another city, at another time. He’d never worn them before tonight.

Though he didn’t want DNA evidence in the system, it didn’t scare him if the police found something. He didn’t have a record. He’d killed before, many times, and not one person had spoken to him. He was smart—smarter than the cops, and certainly smarter than the victims he’d carefully selected.

Still, he must be cautious. Meticulous. Being smart meant that he couldn’t assume anything. What did his old man use to say?

Assume makes an ass out of you and me…

The killer scowled. He wasn’t doing any of this for his old man, though his father would get the retribution he deserved. He was doing this for himself. His own retribution. He was this close to finishing the elaborate plan he’d conceived years ago.

He could scarcely wait until six days from now, March 9, when his revenge would be complete.

He was saving the guiltiest of them for last.

Still, he hoped his old man would be pleased. Hadn’t he done what his father was too weak to do? Righted the many wrongs that had been done to them. How many times had the old man said these people should suffer? How many times had his father told him these people were fools?

Still, he hoped his old man would be pleased. Hadn’t he done what his father was too weak to do? Righted the many wrongs that had been done to them. How many times had the old man said these people should suffer? How many times had his father told him these people were fools?

Yet his father just let it happen and did nothing about it! Nothing! Because he was weak. He was weak and pathetic and cruel.

Breathe. Focus. All in good time.

All in good time.

The killer took another, smaller plastic bag from his backpack. He removed his wet gloves, put them inside, added a good-sized rock, tied the bag, then threw it into the lake.

Still naked, he shivered in the cold, still air. He wasn’t done.

Do it quick.

He walked into the lake, the water colder than ice. Still, he took several steps forward, his feet sinking into the rough muck at the bottom. When his knees were submersed, he did a shallow dive. His chest scraped a rock, but he was too numb to feel pain. He broke through the surface with a loud scream. He couldn’t breathe; he couldn’t think. His heart pounded in his chest, aching from the icy water.

But he was alive. He was fucking alive!

He went under once more, rubbed his hands briskly over his arms and face in case any blood remained. He would take a hot shower when he returned home, use soap and a towel to remove anything the lake left behind. But for now, this would do.

Twenty seconds in the water was almost too long. He bolted out, coughed, his body shaking so hard he could scarcely think. But he had planned everything well and operated on autopilot.

He pulled a towel from his backpack and dried off as best he could. Stepped into new sweatpants, sweatshirt, and shoes. Pulled on a new pair of gloves. There might be blood on the ATV, but it wasn’t his blood, so he wasn’t concerned.

He took a moment to stare back at the dark, still lake. Then he took one final look at the body splayed faceup. He felt nothing, because she was nothing. Unimportant. Simply a small pawn in a much bigger game. A pawn easily sacrificed.

He hoped his old man would be proud of his work, but he would probably just criticize his son’s process. He’d complain about how he did the job, then open another bottle of booze.

He hoped his father was burning in hell.

He jumped on the ATV and rode into the night.

Excerpted from The Third to Die by Allison Brennan, Copyright © 2020 by Allison Brennan. Published by MIRA Books. 

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0778309444/httpwwwalli0f-20

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-third-to-die-allison-brennan/1131669020;jsessionid=C1F1BD4B1DE6C665460E505FA5022816.prodny_store02-atgap03?ean=9780778309444 

IndieBound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9780778309444

Books-A-Million: https://www.booksamillion.com/product/9780778309444

AppleBooks: https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-third-to-die/id1464894471

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Allison_Brennan_The_Third_to_Die?id=0sWZDwAAQBAJ

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~Cassie

 

 

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I'm a SAHM of three boys. I was lucky enough to marry my best friend who is totally ok with my book hoarding tendencies. I have been a lover of books my whole life and it has been such a blessing to be able to share that love with my kids.

4 thoughts on “Blog Tour: Third To Die by Allison Brennan

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