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MYSTERY/Burke, Alafair
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Review by Booklist Review

When a bodyguard is killed in the Manhattan penthouse owned by his billionaire boss, Sam Sparks, the case gets under Detective Ellie Hatcher's skin. But she has to set aside this unsolved crime and her suspicions of Sparks, which land her a contempt charge and a night in jail to investigate the murder of an NYU coed, who was being harassed online, and her roommate. Then a real-estate agent who moonlights as a call girl is found murdered after being tortured in a first-class hotel, and Hatcher and partner J. J. Rogan find a common thread in what seem unrelated cases. In the third in the Ellie Hatcher series (after Dead Connection, 2007, and Angel's Tip, 2008), Burke skillfully portrays her protagonist's relationships with victims' families and persons of interest; with her partner; with her female boss, Liuetentant Robin Tucker; and, especially with ADA Max Donovan, whose love provides her only respite from the work with which she's obsessed. Up-to-the-minute, action-packed crime fiction from the daughter of James Lee Burke.--Leber, Michele Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Burke's third white-knuckle thriller finds NYPD Det. Ellie Hatcher (after Angel's Tip) and her partner, J.J. Rogan, investigating the murder of NYU student Megan Gunther, who's the target of threatening posts on a college gossip Web site. The death of bodyguard Robert "Robo" Mancini, whose bullet-ridden corpse turns up in a swanky new building, the 212, built by Sam Sparks, the high-powered Manhattan real-estate developer Robo worked for, ups the ante. When Sam makes it clear that the police won't have access to any company records, Ellie's interest is piqued. As she and J.J. try to piece together Megan's life, they discover a link between the student and a recently murdered real estate agent. With her usual tenacity, Ellie pursues leads that put both her career and her life at risk. Burke expertly weaves real-life headlines into her plot-particularly the Craig's List Killer and the slew of recent political scandals-without ever sacrificing originality. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review

When NYPD detective Ellie Hatcher (Angel's Tip) and her partner, J.J. Rogan, suspect a connection between the murder of a college co-ed who'd recently complained about an online stalking incident and the murder of a bodyguard employed by a wealthy and well-known real estate developer, the clues lead them into the darker side of the Internet-a world of anonymous online gossip and call-girl ads. Ellie soon finds herself juggling two active cases while sitting in the crosshairs of both office politics and high-powered persons of interest who don't like the police looking into their business. Verdict The latest installment of former district attorney and current criminal law professor Burke's Ellie Hatcher series is a fast-paced thriller featuring an appealingly current angle, dynamic characters, and a spiderweb of possibilities she manages to leave tied up neatly. Strongly recommended for public libraries, especially where thrillers are popular. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 12/09.]-Amy Brozio-Andrews, Albany P.L., NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A novel that opens up the seamy sideis there another?of untraceable online threats; of pay-for-sex escort services; and of murder in posh penthouses. Burke (Angel's Tip, 2008, etc.) reintroduces Ellie Hatcher, a tough and beautiful cop, to investigate the murder of Robert Mancini, whose bullet-riddled body has been found in a penthouse at 212 Lafayette in New York City. It turns out the apartment is owned by millionaire (billionaire?) real-estate tycoon Sam Sparks, whom characters often refer to as the Sam Sparks? (As in the Donald Trump?). When he arrives shortly after the murder, he seems more upset that Hatcher is making footprints on his designer carpet than that his employee Mancini has been murdered in his bed. Evidence abounds that a personal "escort" had been with Mancini, so she immediately becomes a suspect. Hatcher quickly gets into big trouble (and even cools her heels in the slammer for 24 hours) for suspecting that Sparks himself could be responsible for this murder, but another possibility existsthat the missing escort had been an unwilling witness and that she's on the lam because she fears for her life. Meanwhile, NYU student Megan Gunther has been receiving threatening messages on a smarmy website, Campus Juice ("All the Juice. Always Anonymous"). When her parents go to the police precinct to get some action on these threats, they're told that the perp can't be traced and that anyway there's nothing illegal about sending creepy messages. This story doesn't go down well with the Gunthers, even more so when less than 24 hours later Megan is murdered in her apartmentthough the intended victim just might have been Megan's roommate, who we discover works for an escort service and is using an alias. Bodies continue to pile up in various distressing guises, including one that's been tortured, but Hatcher, along with her street-smart partner J.J. Rogan, is just the one to track down the nasties. Burke's plot is more convoluted than necessary, and her prose more serviceable than memorable. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.