“ Genre: Crime / Thriller / Author: John F. Rooney / Paperback / 218 Pages / Book is published 2011-02 by Senneff House Publishers „
NYC police detective Denny Delaney has ended up confronting, and killing, the domestic terrorist known as Felix the Cat not just once, but twice. So who is spray painting his messages across the city once more? That is puzzling enough, but with no terrorist action seeming to accompany it, not quite as pressing as the strange murders that begin to crop up along the docks. Each victim is a well heeled rent boy, fully clothed and carefully posed in a respectful manner. each one also has a blue plastic wrapped condom stuffed into their mouth. Who is killing these young men, and why? When wife Monny begins receiving emails discussing Felix and the current serial killer case, things begin to hit a bit close to home for Denny. but just how close to him personally is something Denny certainly never expected.
This is the the third volume in a series about NYC police detective Denny Delaney, but it is the first of the books that I have read. The book does make references to an important previous case covered by previous volumes, but we read just enough about that to understand the personal relevance without confusion and a need to have read the previous novels. This particular volumes hands a serial killer case over to Denny, as bodies of rent boys begin to appear, laid out in state with a signature blue plastic wrapped condom shoved into their closed mouths. Denny finds his preconceptions about things he has taken for granted shattered: the nature of love, attraction and devotion, the motivations of fellow officers, and even the true personal nature of people he knows and drinks with at his favourite local pub. Perhaps what surprises Denny the most however is not learning that his preconceptions are not always true, but his private reactions to them, and where it leads him. This is especially true when it comes to young Tim, a cagey young street hustler turned private informant, leading him to perhaps the biggest surprise of his life.
While the book provides a plot with plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader riveted, it does tend to stumble ever so slightly from time to time. Denny as a human being is fallible but capable, and when he is working, or otherwise without his wife in a scene, the story moves at a natural flowing pace showcasing him at his best. This however is not true when wife Monny is to hand. She comes across flat, and the scenes where the couple interact seem a bit contrived at times. Given what happens in the novel that triggers a bit of an epiphany for Denny, this may be more of a plot development for the series as a whole, however, and not a complete detraction. One can see parallels between the smug, secure life Denny has built with Monny with their organic meals and playgoing to that of other characters in the book and their passions, and see a definite lacking. Perhaps most telling of all is the final scene of domestic tranquility in the book. It echoes an earlier scene, and as such not only closes the novel, but leaves the way open for another sequel, perhaps one where Denny has to face the revelations he has uncovered not only about the criminals and the victims, nor just about an old family friend, but what he found out about himself. This in itself is enough to have me look forward to what comes next.
***Special thanks to the author for sending me my review copy. This is available to buy both as a paperback and in ebook format for the Kindle platform via Amazon.***