The Kill Room by Jeffrey Deaver is a great mystery/thriller with surprisingly intense suspense and action scenes.  I found the characters extremely interesting, particularly the villains who were well-drawn, complex and chilling.

This is my first time reading these characters, and while I’m sure there is much background and history I am lacking, I had no trouble relating to them and picking up on the relationships.  The story itself was nicely complex with several twists and turns that keep you paying close attention along with the investigators to follow the clues back to the perpetrators.  While the crime is revealed in the opening pages, the full motives behind it, as well as how it was accomplished and the role of each of the villains is gradually revealed.  Several false starts and dead ends keep you guessing along with the lead characters, Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs.

The book alternates viewpoints between the good guys and the bad guys.  This plot device can be overdone, but Deaver uses it well here creating both misdirection and suspense without overdoing it.  One of the villains, Jacob Swann, is particularly chilling in a Hannibal Lecter sort of way.  He is intelligent and equal parts fascinating and horrifying.  

I was truly on the edge of my seat due to the intensity of some of the passages.  Very minor quibbles with the overuse of certain terms.  It is impressive that this many books into a series, the characters feel so fresh and the storytelling is so crisp.  This is a quick read and a book certain to please long-time fans as well as win new ones.  Highly recommended.

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