The Coldest Fear
Pinnacle, Sep 1 2011, $7.99
As a child he was sexually and mentally abused and battered by his brutal father until he broke and killed his dad. Because of his age and his mental state he was sent to a mental institution where he remained a resident for years. The doctors released him when he conned them into believing he was sane and ready to become a productive member of society.
He returned home to find the weapon he used to kill his father and traveled the county killing wherever he lived until ennui left him needing a challenge. He read an article about Evansville, Illinois Detective Jack Murphy who never lets a case turn cold. The psychopath grabs Jack’s attention when he kills Cordelia Morse who had her face chopped off and an article about Jack with an eyeball on it nearby. A few hours later Louise Brigham is found murdered with a similar M.O. as Cordelia; this time the psychopath carved Jack’s initials into the corpse. Other people are murdered by the same killer. Middle aged Brenda Lincoln is murdered and the killer was in a rage when he destroyed the body which most likely means she meant something to the predator. The murderer also kills those who might remotely identify him. Finally the preliminaries are done with the gauntlet thrown so the maniac goes after Jack who intends to bring the murderer down.
As serial killer thrillers go, the Coldest Fear is one of the best as the readers understand what drove the Cleaver to his killing spree. The repartee between Jack and his partner Liddell shows a genuine friendship and respect for one another while also abating the tautness caused by the serial killer. Sub-genre fans will enjoy Jack’s latest case (Cruelest Cut) as his deadly adversary steals the show with his lethal repertoire. Rick Reed is a talent that fans of thrillers will want to read.