by Bruce TierneyJuly, 2000
In Demolition Angel, author Robert Crais introduces a female protagonist, Carol Starkey, a one-time bomb squad member who was disfigured and nearly killed by the bomb that took her partner's life. Three years later, as a police investigator in the LAPD Criminal Conspiracy Section, Carol is called in to investigate the aftermath of another bomb, an explosion that has taken the life of one of her co-workers. As the forensics experts sift through the rubble, they turn up a chilling bit of evidence: a fragment of shrapnel bearing the words Carol Starkey. The investigation is ratcheted up several notches, no longer treated as a case of random anarchy, but as the latest in a series of explosions specifically targeting members of the bomb squad. The perpetrator is known only as Mr. Red, the man who would occupy the top position on the FBI Most Wanted list, if only they knew his real name. Carol Starkey is the one technician who has survived Mr. Red's bombs. What follows is a deadly chess game as Carol Starkey and Mr. Red move ever closer to their final confrontation.
Bruce Tierney is a Nashville-based writer and mystery aficionado. He'll recommend the best in mysteries each month in a new column, Whodunit?