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Sunday, August 3, 2014

Don't Talk to Strangers by Amanda Kyle Williams - a review

In a combination of suspense and mystery, the latest Keye Street novel finds the former FBI super-star profiler trekking through the backwater of Georgia where the bodies of two twelve-year-old girls were discovered, one who had been missing for the last decade.
A timely release, only a year after Ariel Castro was discovered hording teenage girls in his urban home in Ohio, the subject matter is so repulsive yet one that we find ourselves pulled into despite the banal evil it represents, probably in the sense of rooting for the survivors, and Williams taps into that vein.
While Street is assisting the sheriff with his investigation, she becomes aware that, at least for other members of the department, she is stepping on toes, an unwilling recruit in a small town world.
A third girl goes missing during the investigation, a pattern is broken, and the killer shows his hand. A door-to-door search is carried on in the county, scouring all the sex-offenders until one by one, an alibi is produced, but can they be believed? Someone is telling lies, hiding secrets. For the local people it was enough knowing that one of their own has committed these crimes. That someone in the community is responsible for the heinous crimes perpetrated on these middle school girls. Is it the teacher, the grocery store clerk, the pastor, or perhaps even someone closer to the girls, a family member? No one is afforded the luxury of a pass, they all come under scrutiny.
As time runs out, Williams weaves an electrically charged plot, sinister and evil, one jolt after another, keeping the reader amped. In the end, the shock is a charge hard to accept. If real-life events have you wondering how well you know your neighbors, then this read will be a chart-topper for you.

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