Questions of morality and justice are the centerpieces of this unusual, provocative and emotionally intense novel. Best-selling writer Faye Kellerman uses an unusual format in her newest Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus suspense.Half of the story is told in first person by Terry MacLaughlin. Faye Kellerman is an extraordinarily gifted storyteller who can deliver well crafted and utterly convincing tales of suspense.

Terry MacLaughlin is a high school student who's in love with the mysterious, enigmatic Christopher Whitman. Chris claims to return her feelings, but refuses to consummate their relationship. Instead he has been having sex with Prom Queen Cheryl Diggs and is engaged to a girl back east.

When Chris reveals his past to Terry, claims to be at peace with the situation. As the adopted son of a Mafia boss, he has a duty to the family. Chris must marry the daughter of a rival family when he graduates to cement peace between the clans.

Terry and Chris continue to grow closer but on prom night Cheryl is found murdered and suddenly the young lovers are both suspects. Chris agrees to confess to the crime, as long as Terry is left alone. Despite evidence linking Chris to the crime, Lieutenant Davidson's insistence on only following evidence that ties Chris to the murder makes LAPD Detective Sergeant Peter Decker uneasy.

Peter's convinced that Chris is a highly twisted individual perfectly capable of murder and has probably killed in the past, but is he Cheryl's killer? If Peter continues to pursue the closed case on his own and proves Chris innocent, will he be letting a psychopath back out on the streets?

(Aug., 464 pp, $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith