Time Release

Martin J. Smith, Author Jove Books $5.99 (344p) ISBN 978-0-515-12028-8
Smith translates the 1982 Tylenol poisoning of seven people in Chicago into six people dead of Primenyl tampering in Pittsburgh, ca. 1986. At the time, Detective Grady Downing was positive he knew who was behind the killings, but he couldn't get enough evidence to convict. The chase destroyed his personal life and nearly capsized his career as well. Now, on the murders' 10th anniversary, Downing's sure the killer is at it again but the detective can't get involved officially. For help, he turns to Jim Christensen, a repressed-memory expert who owes Downing a favor. He wants Christensen to sift through the mind of Sonny, the youngest (surviving) son of his suspect, Ron Corbett. What Downing doesn't tell Christensen is that on both his last outing and this one, the killer turned on him when he came too close. Downing makes a fine tortured character, though the equally traumatized Christensen isn't as likable and is also plagued by Smith's many meanderings into his personal life. This is a good creepy debut thriller that comes with one caveat for aficionados of the procedural: old-fashioned police work doesn't solve the crime, psychology does (more than memories are being repressed here) so skeptics beware. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/03/1997
Release date: 03/01/1997
Genre: Fiction
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