Mike McCabe is a homicide detective and single father investigating the work of a brutal serial killer in Portland, Maine. The killer targets attractive young women, holds them hostage for a week, then murders them by removing their hearts while they are alive. When another young woman is found missing who fits the killer's profile, McCabe must race to discover the identity of the killer, while simultaneously dealing with small town politics, a female partner who may want to be more than partners at work, and an ex-wife who wants back in his daughter's life after three years.
The Cutting is an impressive thriller by debut author James Hayman. Though a bit predictable, Hayman's fine storytelling and interesting characters make this "a cut" (sorry, couldn't resist) above the rest.
4.0 out of 5 stars A satisfying thriller!, May 21, 2011
I really enjoyed this fast-paced mystery thriller and immediately sought out the next book - The Chill of Night (Det. Michael Mccabe Mysteries) - in what I hope will be a long series featuring Detective Sergeant Michael McCabe and his partner, Maggie Savage.
A young teen-aged girl is found dead and mutilated in a scrap-metal yard. Her heart has been cut out in a manner that could pass for surgical precision. Earlier that morning, a jogger -- another blonde and beautiful athlete -- was abducted by what McCabe fears is a serial killer targeting this type of victim. The suspense builds as he and Maggie race to try to find this kidnapped woman before she too succumbs to the mutilation. They discover a string of similar crimes stretching from Portland, Maine to Florida. Who is behind these murders and what are they doing with the hearts they steal?
Another thing I really liked, besides the well-developed plot, were the two main characters. I want to get to know them and read more about them. Mike McCabe is a single father raising a 13 year old girl with an ex-wife who has returned for a visitation after several years of absence from their lives. Maggie is a bit mysterious and might have some secrets. The partners work well together and there seems to be a bit of chemistry as well.
If you like a good thriller, ignore the fact that you may or may not find some of the book predictable, and open the cover!
The setting is Portland, Maine. This book delivers a roller coaster of thrills. A serial killer is on the loose and the suspects are many. Very fast read.
James Hayman writes like a veteran although this is his first mystery. He is comparable to James Patterson, Jonathan Kellerman and Ridley Pearson. I can hardly wait until his next book is out!!