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Saturday, 4 June 2016

Book Review of The Madonna Vigilante

Book Blurb:

Sara Marshall, the daughter of a proud, three-generation line of Philadelphia cops, has committed the unpardonable sin. While trying to save the life of another cop, Sara has shot and killed a black female. This event has intensified an already volatile face-off between the Philadelphia Police Department and the city's large black population. There is another side effect of this unfortunate shooting. Sara's career crashes, as does her love life, and her relationship with her own family. 

Before her dismissal from the Philadelphia Police Department--a dismissal Chief Tony Spango euphemistically calls an "administrative leave of absence"--Sara was investigating several murders that she is convinced were all committed by the same individual. The MO of the killer in each case was identical and yet the victims--a high school band director, a notorious pimp, and a blue collar spouse abuser--appear to have absolutely no connection with each other. 

A fourth murder occurs. This time it is Father Mark Donnelly, rector of St. Michael the Angel Catholic Church. The fifth victim is Pastor Bob Messier, Director of Christian Education at the Grace Methodist Church. Each victim is a man. Each has been executed with a single bullet to the back of the head. Each has a Bible quote pinned to his body. When the media and social networks discover the notes were all written with lipstick, they are immediately convinced the killer is a woman, and quickly label her the Madonna Vigilante. 

Despite her ostracism by the police department, Sara Marshall is drawn back into these cases by her ex-partner, Kevin Stiles, whose police work has been hampered by his own personal struggles and by his wife's illness. 

Sara's unofficial investigation brings her in contact with several suspects, all of whom have a special affinity to handguns. Each of them also has an underlying dislike of men. The question becomes: can that dislike turn into hatred? And can that hatred lead to murder? In other words, who IS the Madonna Vigilante? And why is she--or he--killing people? 

The final answer and the final confrontation takes place on a major city thoroughfare whose official name is the Schuylkill Expressway. To Philadelphians, it is not-so-affectionately called the Sure-kill Speedway. And a running gun battle between Sara Marshall and the killer illustrates the accuracy of the nickname.

My thoughts

The plot is fast paced and it will keep you in the hunt of what would happen next. Sara the protagonist of the story will take you from crime to how her personal life is shattered and how she is convinced that a serial killer is in the hunt. It is an ultimate crime- thriller novel that will keep you at the edge of the seats in the hunt of how things are going to change.


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