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Crime School It's an old idea that cops and killers are twinsAnother macabre masterpiece of crime fiction from O'Connell someone is stalking and killing blondes in NYC but the story that unravels behind this trope of the genre is gruesome emotionally wrenching than anything your average writer could produceAfter dipping in and out of this series I'm now reading it in the correct order and can see how precisely O'Connell rations information about Mallory deepening both our understanding of her damaged psyche and her relationships with Riker and Charles She sprang fully formed in the first book Mallory's Oracle but it was only in the last book Flight of the Stone Angel that we were allowed to understand where she came from Here we get an insight into her life on the streets and a obliue portrait of an eually damaged child who is both like and radically unlike Mallory herselfI can't put into words how much I love this series O'Connell's writing is superb nuanced crisp acidic full of dark dark humour but also pliable enough to hit emotional high notes without ever faltering Crime is such an over crowded marketplace but O'Connell is one of its contemporary cult stars just brilliant Excellent O'Connell digs into our brains and hauls out empathy repulsion anger regret pity insanity Mallory's world is not one I want to live in but six books into the series I feel like a rookie ghost standing by the sergeant's desk at the foot of the stairs leading up to Special Crimes Unit watching O'Connell knows we can never understand the gears that propel Mallory or the pain that Riker lives with or the uniue and combustible combination of elements that is Charles Butler I learned to cut Lieutenant Coffey some slack in this book and the jackass I wanted punched she punched O'Connell has multiple writing gifts she unwraps for us one piece of bloody duct tape at a time Crazy is a place said Janos You go you come back a woman is found hanged in her apt but what do the red candles and hundreds of flies signify then they find she is not actually dead and is now in hospital in a coma it gets personal as she is sparrow a prostitute known both to riker and mallorythey pursue this case together with butler and find it has a link to an unsolved hanging 2 decades ago also there is another hanging and a further woman is being targeted can they stop this madman in time? the usual well depicted characters and this time it gets into the personal lives of riker and mallory than usual he the ending was disappointing it was left so wide open with no answers is this the author's way to encourage to read her next novel? a good author should not need to do this bev A most excellent 5 star read Kathy at some point you need to become human Over the course of six novels Carol O'Connell has become one of our most acclaimed writers of suspense Her heroine Kathy Mallory is stunningly uniue Milwaukee Journal Sentinel O'Connell conjures up a world of almost Faulkerian richness and complexity said People and the Chicago Tribune wrote simply O'Connell has raised the standard for psychological thrillers A wild child turned New York City policewoman Mallory was adopted off the streets as a small girl Very little has ever really been known about what happened to her back then how she lived but the past is about to come alive Crime School begins with the discovery of a woman found hanging in a burning apartment tufts of her own blond hair stuck in her mouth and red candles scattered all around Immediately Mallory knows several things The fire was set so the woman would be discovered The crime is identical to another one twenty years old And she knows this woman She is a prostitute named Sparrow who took her in all those many years ago and then betrayed her There is unfinished business between Mallory and Sparrow and the uest to settle it will send her spinning back to a time of secrets and desperation and into the mind of a criminal whose work has only just begun This was very good and tied up loose ends I didn't realize I wanted tied I don't wait so long to read the next series entry I like Charles uite a bit I always love Carol O'Connell's Mallory novels This the sixth in the series is no exception It's written with her usual flair wit insight and excellent storytelling As always it is extremely well structured so that the story and tension build slowly but grippingly and the climaxes are both thrilling and surprisingThe crime story itself is about a serial killer who it emerges has links to characters from Mallory's childhood on the streets so the story is interwoven with revelations about Mallory's past and how she came to be the woman she is It's all well done; you always have to suspend disbelief to an extent while reading a Mallory novel and the same is true here but it's a satisfying and engrossing story with her characters including old friends like Riker and Charles Butler as well drawn as everThis is perhaps rather darker in tone and revealing of Mallory's past than some others and so traumatic and thoughtful I slightly missed the comic aspects of Mallory's if you do that your life will be an utter misery from now on approach which aren't strong here but it's still a great read and warmly recommended This was the first Kathy Mallory book I read Apparently this is the 5th book I probably should have read them in order The story was wonderful or should I write the plot but I didn't get into the characters Also there seemed to be so much that I didn't know about what happened 'before' I've read other series and most times a book in a series can stand alone This one could not I felt like there was information that I was supposed to already know as I read this book but somehow I didn't But it was a bit lighter than the last one in the series and I enjoyed it I might need a happy book break before I start the next one Kathleen Mallory is not your typical policewoman First she was a street child until found and adopted by a policeman She uses her gut instinct to solve crimes and takes no guff from anyone Now she is working the murder of a bag lady

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