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review 2018-06-13 16:13
Deep as the Dead by Kylie Brant
Deep as the Dead (The Mindhunters Book 9) - Kylie Brant

The serial killer, known as the Tailor, has struck again. Three bodies in a span of just two weeks after three years of silence...

Ethan Manning knows the killer is escalating and he needs a task force. Fast. What he gets is one single forensic profiler that brings back memories both good and bad...

This series is now so far removed from the first few installments (which I loved), that I can barely believe it.

Bland characters with zero chemistry, a predictable (and unnecessary, in my opinion) conflict between the two leads, plodding pacing, and a very uninteresting villain.

A huge disappointment.

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review 2018-02-04 07:21
What the Dead Know by Kylie Brant
What the Dead Know - Kylie Brant

Keira Saxon left her job as a homicide detective in Chicago when her father had taken ill, and then took over his position as sheriff when he was killed in a bear attack...Then nine months later she receives his diseased liver in his own little cooler, and she knows he wasn't attacked by a bear, but by the most dangerous beast of them all—a man.

She also received a severed finger alongside her father's liver, so she knows she has another victim to take care of. Weary of Michigan State Police, since they failed to notice her father wasn't attacked by a bear, she enlists the help of Raiker's Mindhunters and gets a twofer (forensic pathologist and investigator) in a single person, Finn Carstens.

Together they'll hunt a hunter that's drawing them deeper into his own game of cat and mouse.

Yet another disappointing installment in this series. While it started off great—the mystery was intriguing, the glimpses into the killer chilling, and the danger was lurking just underneath the surface of the story—it all fizzled out just after the half mark.
As soon as the scenes from the killer's point of view winked out of existence and the procedural and investigation kicked up a notch, the sense of imminent danger, the urgency, the intensity, and the intrigue were gone, replaced by a plodding tempo, a poor excuse for attraction (I won't deign call it romance) between the two protagonists, and a very dull rest of the plot that was not saved by the reappearance of the killer and the reveal of his identity. It was a revelation, but it failed to surprise, since I was beyond caring at that point.

Maybe it should've been shorter, or maybe it should've kept the killer more in the foreground...I don't know.

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review 2018-02-02 16:23
Secrets of the Dead by Kylie Brant
Secrets of the Dead (The Mindhunters Book 7) - Kylie Brant,Mary-Theresa Hussey

Someone is gunning for Jaid and Adam Raiker's adoptive son, Royce and after a failed kidnapping attempt, Raiker knows he needs to be proactive if he wants to keep his family safe. Enter Declan Gallagher and Eve Larrison posing as a married couple disgruntled with Declan's "former" employer, Adam Raiker.

This story was a disappointment. Too leisurely paced (nothing really happened and there was no real sense of urgency until almost the very end) with rather bland and dull characters and a very sorry excuse of a romantic side-plot.

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review 2017-10-23 08:43
Thoughts: Deep As The Dead
Deep as the Dead (The Mindhunters Book 9) - Kylie Brant

Deep As The Dead
by Kylie Brant
Book 9 of Mindhunters

First of all, warning for some gruesome murders.  But this is par for Kylie Brant anyway, as her Mindhunters series has always leaned more towards the dark and gritty.  You don't actually see the murder happen, but the victims' bodies DO get described in a bit of detail.

Secondly, I would love to believe that the reason why I enjoyed this book slightly more so than I did the previous two Mindhunters installments, was because Kylie Brant read my reviews and tweaked the few things I'd mentioned as little quibbles from said previous two installments.  One book I mentioned had excellent chemistry between the main couple, but an extremely scattered outline and a chaotic second half; the other book had a well written progression and murder investigation, but the couple held little chemistry.

Deep As The Dead brings the best of both worlds that I've always recalled loving about the Mindhunters series together; and that makes me intensely happy.

Nonetheless, I've yet to be completely disappointed in any of the works I've read by Brant, so really, she's just good at what she does in this genre--telling an exciting romantic suspense, with just the right amount of everything I've always enjoyed in this series.

The Story:
A serial killer at large has been absent for about three years, but recently makes his reappearance with a few brutal killings within a short period of time.  He leaves a calling card--the victims' mouths are sewn together, hiding within the body of a dead dragonfly and second, unique insect within a small glassine bag.  The dragonfly represents the serial killer, the other insect hints at the victims' sins.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sergeant Ethan Manning has been assigned to the newly formed task force to capture this serial killer, dubbed by the media as The Tailor because of his sewing his victims' mouths shut.  The Tailor has eluded law enforcement across Canada for years, several investigators and task forces having been unsuccessful at apprehending him; and Ethan has no qualms about asking for whatever resources he can get in order to bring this monster to justice.  What he hadn't expected was to see Alexa Hayden again, so many years after the two of them parted under tragic circumstances.

Alexa is a consultant with Raiker Forensics, specializing in forensic entomology, which proves useful in figuring out what the serial killer's obsession with insects could lead to.  She's the one who makes the connection between the meaning behind the dragonfly and the second bug, and begins formulating a profile, figuring out what this killer is after, and who the next victim could possibly be.  By chance, The Tailor notices Alexa, learns of her specialty, somehow feels with her some sort of kinship.  And eventually, she has become his next obsession.

My Thoughts:
Of course, a romantic suspense is never short on psychotic serial killers who sight in on our main heroine because of some sort of trait she exhibits.  I'm not entirely sure that I've actually seen this particular device employed in any of the Kylie Brant Mindhunters books, except maybe two.  But this is a device we see in a lot of romantic suspense, nonetheless.  I suspect it's a means of making our main heroine "a special someone" in the story, without really hammering in the fact that she's "a special someone."

While I've never been entirely too thrilled about the main heroine being "special," in such a way, I think that this characteristic actually plays to Alexa's benefit.  Because, despite what Ethan thinks, I think she kind of knows that she's good at getting people to open up to her and let down their guards; and I think she knows that if she uses the right amount of charm, she could get any witness or interviewee to talk freely and comfortably.

And, of course, it's her being "a special someone" that will get our elusive serial killer to finally break his patterns and screw up enough to get caught... obviously.


Deep As The Dead encompasses one of the devices I love most about crime thrillers--a feeling of police procedural and togetherness on the force, where all of our players work together to find the killer and bring him to justice.  It's always intriguing to me, watching our main task force working together in this way, and also kind of bonding over their shared need to stop a monstrous killer.  There were amusing little asides and quips among the task force members, and great interactions.

The investigation was interesting enough to keep me hooked.  The little insights about the use of the insects was interesting.  Now, the whole thing about the killer seeing himself as "doing God's work," is probably an overused trope in crime thrillers, as it's a pretty common one employed.  Of course, it's often commonly used if only because it credible.

The romance between Alexa and Ethan was mature and sweet, tinged with the underlying pain of their history.  To be honest, there were all sorts of signs that an angsty love story was probably going to play out, but I'm actually kind of happy that the two were able to compartmentalize, set aside their feelings about the past, and work with each other.  Even when a few tidbits about their history surfaced, it didn't stop them from being professional; it didn't keep them from being mature about their situation.  It didn't keep the two of them from caring about each other as colleagues, or on a personal level.

It was a subtle, yet wonderfully handled second-chance romance; and the way it played out made me think that their parting really wasn't as angry as they had made it out to be, even if the circumstances were still heartbreaking.

Deep As The Dead is an excellently enjoyable new installment to the Mindhunters series.  And even while there are rather noticeable flaws in editing--typos, missing pronouns, missing words here and there, missing verbs--I found myself just moving on and disregarding those errors.  It's a little jarring at times, truth be told, to see an editing error, because I find myself backtracking at points to try to figure out what the sentence was trying to convey.  But it wasn't bad enough to make me truly upset with the book or it's unpolished publication.

This was a good romantic suspense.  And I look forward to Kylie Brant's next installation... or, in fact, her next book release, which I suspect isn't related to the Mindhunters series.



Halloween Bingo

This book could also count for:

  • Murder Most Foul
  • Serial Killer
  • Terrifying Women



Source: anicheungbookabyss.blogspot.com/2017/10/thoughts-deep-as-dead.html
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review 2017-08-17 11:25
11 by Kylie Brant
11 - Kylie Brant

Mia Deleon had spent three torturous years in the hands of a sadistic sexual predator before managing to escape. Yet she's never been able to really enjoy her freedom. Her kidnapper and torturer has never been found because no one had really believed she'd been taken, and even after she left the country her backpack packed with multiple assumed names, she's kept looking over her shoulder, expecting the monster to find her any day.

Until he did...

But Jude Bishop, the man who helped her disappear five years before, got to her first. A tenuous link to her case has been found by the Mindhunters and Jude has been tasked with bringing her back to the States.

But the monster is also on her tail, determined to bring her back, and keep her forever this time.

An interesting, intense and rather gripping (at times) thriller that could've easily done without the poor attempt at romance.

The story was engaging, the pacing appropriately fast, and the characters interesting (although the heroine did make a few strange/bad decisions along the way). Well-written and well-structured, although I couldn't help but think there were pieces of the story missing.
Why did the monster do what he did? How and why did he start? How did he choose his collection? What was his motive?...All these and more questions about the villain (the ending seemed rushed and a tad too easy, BTW) remained unanswered, making the main story arc appear rather hole-y.

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