by Robert Crais
This was my first read by Robert Crais (pronounced crase; his fans call themselves "craisies") which follows LAPD cop Scott James, who is recovering from a shooting that left him seriously injured and his partner, Stephanie, killed. Scott has refused a medical retirement but after many months is still battling pain and PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). He's desperately seeking a slot somewhere, ANYWHERE, within LAPD and is forced upon the K-9 unit. There he partners with Maggie, a former Marine explosives-sniffing dog who lost her partner to an IED and sniper attack. She also is suffering from PTSD and may be dropped from the force. Together, she and Scott help each other heal while they seek out the identity of the men who murdered Stephanie. One does not need to be a dog fan to enjoy this mystery. The story is told from both Scott's and Maggie's points of view. Maggie is not anthropomorphized, and her chapters are fascinating as we learn how Maggie relates to the world. Scott is allowed on the fringe of the investigation because of his involvement as a victim, and he's the one to notice a few irregularities which others dismiss. He and Maggie end up on their own and in serious danger. The characters and their backgrounds held my attention, nor did I guess "whodunnit" though I had some very broad, overall suspicions in that general direction. Good mystery, good suspense, likable characters, pleasing epilogue; overall a satisfying read. Crais also writes the Elvis Cole, Joe Pike mysteries. So far this one is a stand-alone and I liked this one so well I hope this is the first in a planned series. -- recommended by Charlotte K. - Bennett Martin Public Library
[Also available in book-on-cd and Large Print formats.]
[ official Suspect page on the official Robert Crais web site ]
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