Great book in the Prey series. Lucas Davenport is pitted against an extremely clever hit woman.
Loyal Lucas Davenport fans will remember Clara Rinker, the stone killer from 'Certain Prey.' After making her escape, she fled to Cancún, where she established a new identity, found a lover and became pregnant. Clara, now Cassie McLain, was on her way to a normal existence for the first time in her life. Then a hired gun from the States makes an attempt on her life killing her boyfriend and wounding her enough to lose her child. Clara recovers with one thing one her mind - cold, cold revenge. Clara's going home, with some very evil plans.
When the FBI realize that McLain was Rinker and has returned to the States, they call in Davenport, who is, after all, the only cop to ever even come close to catching her. Lucas, who is spending his time annoying builders and supervising his fiancée Weather's pregnancy, reluctantly agrees. Actually, the truth is that Weather tells him to go away and stop bothering her. What follows is a classical chase thriller where Rinker manages to keep killing one step ahead of her pursuers. In several cases, she even manages to rub Lucas's face in it.
If you are a sucker for tricks and wild plot devices, you are going to love 'Mortal Prey.' Rinker is smart and crazy. Each killing is detailed and jarring, full of the kind of twists that keep this from being yet another long chase. And while Clara is certainly over the top, Sandford manages to make her a sympathetic character all on her own. I found myself cheering for her time after time. She is after the Mafia men who put out the hit on her and she intends to get each and every one. That she is also capable of killing anyone in her way seems to become a matter of indifference.
Lucas and the FBI agents as well, repeatedly get left holding the bag. Malone and Mallard return, along with a host of camp followers. Davenport, true to his nature, runs his own investigation with the help of some St. Louis retired officers, and manages to keep finding almost enough clues. Of course, it wouldn't be any fun if they caught her too early, and the little glitches and tricks that keep her out of reach are novel enough to keep the action moving without any sign of tedium.
Oddly enough, Sandford does such a good job of making Rinker likeable that he winds up making Davenport look a bit of a jerk. One is tempted to think he is suffering from a bad case of premarital jitters, and that may very well be the case. I can't consider it a major defect, because the book itself is extremely well written. Certainly, it is a welcome return to Sandford's best form.
One of my personal favorites. I love Clara and her relationship with Lucas. This one doesn't disappoint!