Abby Maddox is a celebrity. Everyone knows who she is. She's been on TV, on magazine covers, and there are even books about her. But she's a prisoner. Not of her fame and not at the hands of the paparazzi, but literally: she sits in a maximum security prison, a convicted of slashing a cop's throat. While it's not necessary, you can read her back-story, in Creep — basically, Abby is the former girlfriend and accomplice of Ethan Wolfe, a serial killer who did away with a dozen women before he was killed and Abby was caught.
Although it seems justice was served, there are some who cannot forget the events which ended with Creep and pick up in Freak. Puget Sound State professor Sheila Tao, who nearly became a statistic at the hands of Wolfe after spurning him, is one. And so is a mysterious 'freak' who has picked up the serial slayings and is leaving bodies as sick love letters to and for Abby. There's also former Seattle PD Officer Jerry Isaac, the one whom Abby attacked and nearly killed. Hideously scarred and permanently impaired, Isaac believes the dangerous and deranged woman should rot in her cell… but, now a PI, Isaac can't help but wonder if Abby holds any clues or keys to the new spate of crimes which seem be to more than mere copycat. Suspense ramps up as the players scramble to put the pieces together before Abby's #1 fan takes another life.
Author Jennifer Hillier made her fiction debut with the aforementioned Creep. She runs a popular website steeped in the thriller genre, where she interacts with fans and other thriller writers all over the world. (www.jenniferhillier.ca) That experience, and dedication to the genre, is probably what makes her so good at hitting all the right suspense beats. But it's more than just that. An innate writing talent also exists, doubling the page-turning pleasure.
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Reviewed by Staci Layne Wilson