The "Belle" of this title is one of Burke's more interesting leading ladies. And the threat, in the form of the Ghost Van, is one of the more horrific. The climax is also one of the more memorable in the Burke series. Vachss is one of the best crime writers working today. Perhaps it is because his working with abused children brings him so close to the dark side that he is able to capture it so well on the written page. "Blue Belle" is one his darkest and one of his best.