A Killing of Angels by Kate Rhodes, the second in the series, follows psychologist Alice Quentin as she sets out to catch a serial killer who seems to be targeting one of London's major financial institutions (Available February 25, 2014).
Perhaps all crime fiction stories are cautionary tales. Beyond the simple “Hey, you, don’t get killed,” the genre teaches us that some professions are more dangerous than others. Take prostitution, for example. Chances are, if you’re a prostitute in a crime fiction novel, things won’t end well for you. This isn’t a judgment of the world’s oldest profession, merely an observation that if you’re in the game and there’s a killer on the loose, statistically you’re wearing a big target. Also, kidnapped children – happy endings aren’t often in your future.
But some jobs don’t come with the baggage of previous books, reminding us of all those times that horrible things happened to person X whose job is Y. Working in finance is one of these. Sure, it’s a cutthroat world on Wall Street – or London’s version, “The City” – but it’s usually not that kind of cutthroat, not in the just-got-your-jugular-sliced sort of way. But A Killing of Angels, Kate Rhodes’ second novel featuring London psychologist Alice Quentin, is the book you might want to give that person in your life who’s considering a banking career. That is, if you’d like them to re-consider that particular life path.
When we last saw Alice, in Crossbones Yard, she was knee-deep in dead prostitutes, the victims of a serial killer who took an interest in our dear protagonist personally. Still scarred from the case, both emotionally and physically, Alice tries to recover the best way she knows how: by throwing herself into work and running. The latter often helps her de-stress from the former, especially when patients turn violent. Turns out that, yes, you can still train for the London Marathon with bruised-maybe-broken ribs. All this is to say that she is keeping her distance from the police and the consulting work that got her into so much trouble the last time around. But we wouldn’t have a story if she wasn’t sucked back in, Godfather-style.
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