Elizabeth Heiter. Mira, $14.95 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-0-7783-1584-1

Heiter’s overblown debut introduces FBI special agent Evelyn Blaine, a profiling specialist in the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit in Aquia, Va. When the bodies of two young female kidnapping victims are found on a farm in nearby Bakersville buried up to their necks, Evelyn is assigned to liaise with local police chief Tanner Caulfield. Evelyn is good at her job, despite lacking confidence in other aspects of her life, including in her attraction to FBI Hostage Rescue Team member Kyle McKenzie. She barely escapes a kidnapping attempt, perhaps by the very killer she’s chasing. She persists in her search to the point of obsession, tracing similar crimes like a case officer rather than a profiler and deliberately putting herself at risk. Too much focus on Evelyn’s fraught relationships with her boss, other FBI agents, and McKenzie distracts from the main action. Agent: Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. (Jan.)