January 15, 2013

Deeper than the Dead by Tami Hoag

California, 1985-Four children and young teacher Anne Navarre make a gruesome discovery: a partially buried female body, her eyes and mouth glued shut. A serial killer is at large, and the very bonds that hold their idyllic town together are about to be tested. Tasked with finding the killer, FBI investigator Vince Leone employs a new and controversial FBI technique called "profiling", which plunges him into the lives of the four children-and the young teacher whose need to uncover the truth is as intense as his own. But as new victims are found, Vince and Anne find themselves circling the same small group of local suspects, blissfully unaware that someone very near to them is a murderous psychopath...

I have read most of Tami Hoag's novels and I'm not sure why I waited so long to start reading her Deeper than the Dead/Oak Knoll series. All three books are now out in paperback.

I do love a good thriller, especially with a sliver of romance. Tami Hoag, in my opinion, surpassed all her previous efforts with Deeper than the Dead. What makes DTTD so chilling and unique are the POVs from the four children who came across the dead body in the park. There are a great cast of characters, which include the parents of the children, and we get to briefly see their POVs as well. Identifying the villain is not so easy. The story has been edited very well and is the perfect length.

The main thing to know about DTTD is that its set in 1985, before DNA testing and technology became prevalent...even before behavioural profiling became standard procedure in serial killings. The 80s setting feels very authentic. I find the story even more interesting when compared to all the technological advancement we have today.

Bar none: this is a perfect thriller and great start to the Oak Knoll series. The second book is Secrets to the Grave, the third Down the Darkest Road.

My Rating: 4.5


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