Chelsea Cain

Sweet Heart

"... an excellent thriller..."


Damaged Portland detective, Archie Sheridan, spent ten years tracking Gretchen Lowell, a beautiful serial killer. However, in the end she was the one who caught him. Two years ago Gretchen kidnapped Archie and tortured him for ten days. Then, instead of killing him, she mysteriously decided to let him go. She turned herself in and now Gretchen has been locked away for the rest of her life, while Archie is in a prison of another kind---addicted to pain pills, unable to return to his old life and powerless to get those ten horrific days off his mind.

Archie's a different person, his estranged wife says, and he knows she's right. He continues to visit Gretchen in prison once a week, saying that only he can get her to confess as to the whereabouts of more of her victims, but even he knows the truth - he just can't stay away.

When another killer begins snatching teenage girls off the streets of Portland Archie has to pull himself together enough to lead the new task force investigating the murders. A hungry young newspaper reporter, Susan Ward, begins profiling Archie and the investigation. This sparks a deadly game between Archie, Susan, the new killer, and even Gretchen. They need to catch a killer, and maybe somehow then Archie can free himself from Gretchen once and for all...

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This second book sees the return of Archie Sheridan and unusually, the serial killer he helped catch in her debut novel. Gretchen Lowell has some unexplained hold over Archie, resulting in a very complex relationship between the two of them. Archie is not your stereotypical leading man. His is suffering from many issues, all related to being a victim of Lowell. Its well written, tightly plotted and the characters are all great. And whilst I thoroughly enjoyed this book - and found I could not put it down – I can't help feeling that its predecessor, Heartsick, had a slight edge. I would have preferred to be introduced to more new killers. Sadly, for me, there was almost a feeling of déjà vu. That said, it is an excellent thriller and definitely worth reading.

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