Sunday, July 28, 2013

Last to Die, by Tess Gerritson

This latest book in Gerritson's Rizzoli and Isles fits smoothly in the series.  It does not have much of the romantic sub-plot that has been an element in many of the books, also it does exist. This is pretty much straight detective work.  Jane and Maura spend most of the book working in parallel paths rather than together. 

Much of the setting is in up state New York.  Gerritson is more frequently bringing other settings into her plots than just the Boston area.  It makes for a nice change in "feel" (not really affective the mood or tone of the story--just a nice change in backdrop and minor plot complications). 

The plot centers around three children who seem to be extremely unlucky.  Their families keep getting killed. Maura and Jane together discover this strange pattern and of course begin to follow it.  A dangerous path indeed.  The Mephisto society (from previous books) also becomes involved.

Also interesting to me is that part of the plot involves a boarding school.   Gerritson does a good job writing about kids and schools.  It is evident that she has had a personal interest in the ins and outs of school and adolescent life.

As I read the comments left on the book seller websites I am reminded that this is one series that is hard to read out of order.   If you haven't been reading the series this might not be the best book to begin with.  However, if you are a detective fiction book this is a good series to begin.  Gerritson is (?was?) a medical doctor who turned to writing after beginning a family.  The forensic details are excellent.

Note, those of you who follow the television series will find a slightly different set of characters and plot points.  The two series are in alternate universes.  Similar to the "Bones" series, in that the original characters but not necessarily specific murders or villains drive the television series.  I sort of like it--I can get two different "fixes" in both.

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