Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Golden Bulls by Weston Kincade [Review]
The Golden Bulls (A Life of Death #2) by Weston Kincade
Format: ebook
Source: provided by the author for an honest review
Date read: February 28, 2014

A Life of Death
1. A Life of Death
2. The Golden Bulls - Kindle - eps 5-8 | Kindle - eps 9-12

Weston Kincade
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Synopsis (Goodreads):
Fifteen years of ritual sacrifices that began before Alex Drummond joined the force have become an anomaly in Tranquil Heights. For most residents, anger at the unsolved murders has turned to disappointment with the small police force. Now citizens hope this year’s sacrificial lamb won’t be one of their loved ones.

Alex Drummond’s ability to relive victims’ traumatic murders has not been enough. There are misguided links to Egyptian funerary rights, but without evidence and the murderer’s identity, no one outside of Drummond’s tight circle will believe him, let alone make an arrest and stop the vicious killings. After an anonymous tip, Detective Drummond discovers an annual visitor, a local who moved away years before with a similar flare for murder. He follows her to Washington DC after watching the woman burn her husband alive. His high school friend, Jessie Arturo, who settled in the large city after a failed baseball career, assists with the investigation. In such a large place, unsolved murders abound like cobwebs under abandoned guest beds.

September 20, the serial killer’s anointed date, is only days away. How has the murderer proven so elusive, even from Alex’s paranormal abilities? Is he in over his head, or can Detective Alex Drummond save the ghosts calling to him and decipher this network of brutal, ritual sacrifices before someone else is burnt alive?
Kelly's note: The Golden Bulls encompasses episodes 7-12 of the A Life of Death series.

Thoughts on The Golden Bulls: Picking up where book 1 left off (or continuing on if you're reading these as individual episodes), Alex's trials and tribulations aren't over yet. With his murderous stepfather out of the picture, Alex's family life is starting to find a more stable groove. He's still plagued by visions of the dead, but his mother is stepping up to be a mother again and Alex is dealing.

Then the murders start. Alex being Alex, he tries to use his gift to help the victims. Fast forward 15 years and Alex is hot on the trail of his latest lead in the case. He tangles with old friends, some sketchy food service folks, and a few blasts from his past.

While Alex is running against the clock on this particular case, he's also dealing with his abilities and seeing ghosts who aren't related to the serial killings. He has to balance his desire to help those victims with his need to stop the killer from killing again.

Throw in some Egyptian mythology, ancient bones, and unexpected family dynamics and Alex has a very full plate.

I've enjoyed this series immensely. Between Alex's utterly awful home life in book 1 and his not-so-fun gift, he's come a long way. While he can't openly tell people about his ability, he's learned to use it discreetly as a detective and it's come in handy. I've liked seeing him grow from a punching bag with an awful home life into a caring, fairly well-adjusted man. Here's to less serial killers in his future!

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