The Last Temptation

The Last Temptation
, ,

, Book # 3
St. Martin's Paperbacks
February 4th 2002
March 22, 2019 March 31, 2019

Coming to terms over her breakup with criminal profiler Dr. Tony Hill, Chief Inspector Carol Jordan plunges into a risky undercover sting: track down a European drug trafficker and gain his confidence. But she's being tracked as well-by a serial killer whose psychosexual madness is born out of the darkest corners of history. In quiet isolation, Tony Hill is laying to rest the scars of his past-until he's recruited back into business on a case he can't ignore. An evil is striking uncomfortably close to home, and casting a killer shadow over the life of his long-time colleague and sometimes lover. As the danger closes in, and as Tony and Carol cross paths to navigate the terrain of a shattered human mind, they have no one left to trust but themselves-and fear that there's no place left to run as a killer promises to fulfill his most twisted dreams.

About the book

Third book in the Tony Hill & Carol Jordan series, in which Carol and Tony have not worked together for several months. After Vance’s arrest in the previous book, Tony retires to Scotland, leaving the police profiling, to devote himself to teaching. Here he also met a woman who seems to have solved his problems. Carol, on the other hand, is about to pursue a career in the Europol but before accepting it, she must go undercover to arrest a drug and human trafficker who manages to be invisible. Will she succeed? And how can Tony help her?

Meanwhile, a ruthless serial killer wanders around Europe, targeting some university professors who only share the fact that they teach psychology.

The book is well structured. the tale is in different locations and it seems that the cases are all different or almost different. It takes us in the Netherlands with a murder, in Germany with the cover operation, in England with Carol and Scotland with Tony. Two new policewomen are introduced, the detective in the Netherlands who investigates the murder and the detective in Germany who finds the connection between this murder outside the country with some that took place on German soil and who also has the task of monitoring Carol’s operation.

I like the story of the ship captain and I think that if the book was just about him I would have liked it better, because I don’t like undercover cases, never liked books where the protagonists go undercover, but obviously Laura (that’s me) doesn’t read the plot of the book in a series and buy all four of them together. Ergo must necessarily read it.

I don’t like the fact that Tony is put aside a little at the beginning and also that Carol is too, to give space to the case in Europe (I’ve already started to think that England is not part of Europe… but it’s still part of it for now… and always will be because Europe is the continent and not the politics… maybe using “continent” is more appropriate).

I am sorry that there is no longer the task force of the previous book and I do not like that each book is different from the previous one. Let me explain. This is a series so the main characters should reappear and be the protagonists in all the books. In the first book we have a normal case in which a psychologist is used by the police and here he knows the female police officer (Tony and Carol). In the second one there is a task force that has the task of helping and finding serial killers thanks to the psychologist previously met (Tony), but the leading policewoman (Carol) is on the sidelines up to two thirds of the book. In this third book, the psychologist no longer works for the police, he has retired I don’t even remember where and teaches at the university and the female police officer is going to have a new job at Europol, but it is a fake job because she is sent undercover. Among all this, there is the case in the Netherlands and the case in Germany that don’t get me wrong, it is linked to Carol’s job at the Europol but I find this so detached from the logical thread that a series must follow (or maybe that a series must follow for my pleasure). The author is very good at creating these differences, and with this I mean that at least she doesn’t write books with all the same plot, but I don’t know… I’m losing interest in the series.

I don’t remember if in the first two books Carol had an eidetic memory. I don’t think they ever talked about it… I mean, it’s an unusual thing that makes me recall Reid of Criminal Minds so I would have remembered… so the author must have written this fact just because it suited her, instead of having her characters already characterized at the beginning, she adds only for convenience. And I know that the characters must evolve in the course of their adventures in a series but having something like this is not evolution, it is being born with this gift and I think it should have been presented in the first book.

The more I go on with the reading, the more I don’t like it. I repeat, the book is well structured but Carol makes a beginner’s mistake. I know that without that mistake, there wouldn’t be the last part of the book, but is that really necessary to conclude the case? In addition to the fact that the most interesting case, the one about the wandering killer, is totally put aside by the undercover case that I DON’T LIKE!!!! But why should the main characters always be kidnapped? I don’t understand… it’s like I’m always reading the same book. Moreover, I don’t remember that the first book had two cases to solve, I know that the second had two, and so the third, I am now afraid that even the fourth is like that. If it is, I guess I’ll have to say goodbye to this series (I’ll read the fourth just because I’ve already bought it). Obviously I don’t know how the police work in general, but I don’t believe that any police force puts the friend of the undercover cop in the same building as the policewoman. I’m sorry, but not even someone just out of police school makes this mistake.

After Carol’s cover has been blown to dust and what Radecki did to her, I couldn’t read this book anymore, I flipped the last 50 pages and read a sentence here and a sentence there, but to say I liked it is a euphemism. I’m sorry, the book started well but then went into the abyss with the case that I consider not the main one. Yes, the author has disappointed me since she is also a woman. And then the undercover case is drawn so much, too many characters, too many entanglements. Perhaps the author cannot write a single case and cannot follow a logical thread and to increase the number of pages of the book she writes two cases, but it is boring, because they are not connected. I mean, I’m reading a chapter about the killer case and I want to know how it ends, but I have to stop because in the next chapter we talk about the other case (which never ends). And the mistakes made by the police are too big to be appreciated as “uuh it just went wrong”. As I said, I don’t accept it.

Anyway, I get the feeling that the author doesn’t know what to do with these characters. She doesn’t give them a team, she doesn’t give them a place to work from, three books completely different scenarios. Not to mention their romantic story, we are always there, it doesn’t go forward and it doesn’t go back. Unfortunately, in general, both authors of books and TV series producers believe that keeping a story going for a long time makes people come back to read / watch more but it’s not like that for me.

So I gave two stars for the case of the psychologist killer because the rest was worth a big fat zero.

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