Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Rage Against the Dying by Becky Masterman

In Rage Against the Dying, Brigid Quinn, a retired FBI agent is settling into early retirement with her husband and her dogs. Her previous life and cases are behind her. That is, until Floyd Lynch confesses to one of Brigid's unsolved cases. He knows things only the killer would know and has offered to lead the FBI to one of the bodies. The new agent in charge, Laura Coleman, is convinced that the confession is false while Brigid discovers that she has some unfinished business to attend to.

I really enjoyed this fast-paced page turner. The storyline was compelling, gripping and filled with twists and turns. Just when I thought I'd figured out the direction the author was taking, she'd veer off in another direction.

The opening packed a huge punch, but some of the sexual deviancy details in the opening pages might scare some people off. It does become a little tamer, but this is no cozy mystery. The violence and graphic details of the murders are up front and centre. It's definitely not for those who are squeamish or those who would rather not know or read about the evil that exists out there.

Brigid is such a great character. She definitely not like any other FBI agent I've read about. She's older, fit, short, and sarcastic while sometimes being irrational, impulsive, and aggressive. She still possesses the physical skills of a much younger agent, which makes people underestimate her. It's a shame that she felt the need to hide parts of her past from her husband Carlo. However, past events have lead her to believe that it's for the best. Her situation seemed plausible, but I didn't quite believe that she missed some key clues at first because she was "seeing what she wanted to see". Aren't law enforcement people supposed to be more observant than that?

These are my favourite quotes from the book:
...they say never trust a woman who tells you her age; if she can't keep that secret, she can't keep yours. (page 9)
If Arizonans want Mexicans to stay out of the country, why do they give everything Spanish names? It kinda sends conflicting messages. (page 208)

New word:
arroyos (page 36): dry gulch

Highly recommended. This is a terrific debut thriller for Masterman. I hope to read many more books by this author.

For more information about this book or to browse inside, please visit Penguin's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Penguin for this review copy.

Rage Against the Dying by Becky Masterman, Penguin, ©2013. ISBN 9780143182665(Uncorrected Proof), 307p.

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