Verdict: If you like your detectives hard-bitten, your femme fatales gorgeous, and your plots torturous but obvious, this is the book for you.
The opening airport scenes in “Mind over Murder”, where Atlanta police detective Jake Roberts waits to pick up a fugitive being returned by Interpol are some of the best in the book. Stunningly beautiful serial killer Lori Powers has been on the run in Europe. Jake, who had been having an affair with her while she was on her killing rampage, now has mixed feelings about locking her up. Unfortunately, the author breaks up the narrative with a disconcerting description of how the Interpol agents responded the gorgeous Lori—not something Jake could really know.
In chapter two we meet Jared Hamilton, the computer hacker son of millionaire Richard and Contessa Hamilton. Jared is living a secret life as a successful criminal; having graduated from petty theft to stealing fortunes from family friends he has now decided to turn his hand to murder, the ultimate crime. He is captivated by Lori Powers, her beauty and her killing, and decides to court her through murder. Jared begins his rampage with the brutal killing of his parents, described here in some detail—this book is not for the squeamish.
The book continues alternating between Jake and Jared as narrators, so we see the crimes and the investigation from both sides. The bodies pile up as the story moves towards its conclusion, the final outcome never really in doubt (that’s the trouble with first person narratives, they’re rarely told by dead people). Jake makes for a more interesting narrator than Jared, whose introspections can get tedious.
“Mind over Murder” is a thriller as opposed to a mystery story. The few protagonists are introduced in the first couple of chapters, and unlike them, readers always know exactly what is going on.
Reviewed by Brid Nowlan for IndieReader
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