I'm a long time fan of Lisa Gardner and her recurring character, Boston PD Detective D.D. Warren, is a favourite. Gardner's latest book featuring D.D. is Catch Me - newly released.
I was eager to catch up with D.D. She was unexpectedly pregnant in the last book. How will motherhood affect this tough as nails, no nonsense detective?
"D.D. caught herself actually contemplating wallpaper, then came to her senses, snapping off the vacuum cleaner and giving herself a firm mental shake. Forget the f***ing decor. She was Sergeant Detective D.D. Warren for heaven's sake. She didn't slipcover. She handled homicides."
Well, it's made her a little softer. Baby Jack has had eight weeks of Mommy being home, but it's back to work for sleep deprived D.D. She's going to try to stick to a reasonable work day. On her first case out - the murder of a suspected pedophile - she spies a note on her Crown Vic -"Everyone has to die sometime. Be brave" - and someone running away. She gives pursuit and catches the person - a young woman who swears she didn't leave the note, but was only checking D.D. out. The reason?
"Four days from now, I'm expecting to be murdered. I've read that you're one of the best homicide detectives in the city, so I'd like you handle the investigation. I figure you're the only shot at justice I'll have left."
D.D's immediate thought is that she's a nut case. But, her story has credibility. Charlene "Charlie" Grant works as a police dispatcher. Her two best friends have been murdered - each a year apart on the same day - January 21 - four days from now. And Charlie believes she's next.
"Two homicides, a thousand miles apart. Links between the victims, the methodology, and the date, but not enough evidence or motivation to provide traction. Hell of a story, she had to admit. Interesting. Intriguing. The kind of thing to tickle a workaholic detective's crime bone."
D.D agrees the case has merit and adds it to the team's caseload. She also agrees to let a new young detective, well versed in sex crimes, join the team.
Gardner's plotting was fantastic in Catch Me. She had me stumped and second guessing myself up to the very last pages. Many characters from previous books were brought back in Catch Me - J.T. Dillon is a favourite. (from The Perfect Husband) I quite enjoyed seeing a little bit of vulnerability in D.D. The scenes with her parents had such a ring of truth about them. I've enjoyed watching her relationship with Jack's father Alex grow as well. And the child predator story is a real eye opener.
DD's. chapters are alternated with those of Charlie. We know (or think we know) what is going on with her.
"I hummed softly under my breath, my only concession to my growing nervousness. Seventy-five hours left to live. What would you do?"
Catch Me is a page turner, guaranteed to keep you reading past the time you should shut off the light. If you like suspense, you'll love Lisa Gardner. Read an excerpt of Catch Me. You can find Lisa Gardner on Facebook and on Twitter.