Berkley, Sep 2009, $7.99
Savannah, Georgia is shook by a brutal serial rapist. Police detective Ryne Robel leads the investigation, but needs manpower to capture the violent culprit. The tough cop is extremely unhappy when the best the brass can give him is waif like forensic profiler Abbie Phillips of Mindhunters, a private firm.
However, Abbie quickly proves her worth as a criminologist when she figures out the motive of the sociopath. They also learn the predator uses a designer drug that induces extra fear from the victims because the rapist customizes the cocktail to the person. As they begin to work on how a person is chosen, the pair is also attracted to one another. However, taking down this vicious monster supersedes personal desires.
The first Mindhunters romantic suspense emphasizes from the onset the suspense leaving the romance somewhat in the background. This is critical to the thrilling story line as the scenes with the killer in them are nightmarishly gruesome so that kisses would seem inappropriate (except perhaps for Rocky Horror fans). The story line is somewhat standard serial killer police procedural. However, the changing relationship between the lead partners from disdain to respect plus the deep look at modern day criminology make for a great opening act for whodunit fans.