Demolition Angel

Crais, Robert

Published by Doubleday, 2000
ISBN 10: 0385495846 / ISBN 13: 9780385495844
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Synopsis: With the most unforgettable female lead character since Clarice Starling, Demolition Angel is a blistering stand-alone thriller from the freshest bestselling voice in crime fiction.

Carol Starkey is struggling to pick up the pieces of her former life as L.A.'s finest bomb squad technician.  Fueled with liberal doses of alcohol and Tagamet, she's doing time as a Detective-2 with LAPD's Criminal Conspiracy Section.  Three years have passed since the event that haunts her--a detonation that killed her partner and lover, David "Sugar" Boudreaux.  Fragments from the same explosion sliced through Starkey's protective Kevlar, scarred her beyond repair, and left her outside looking in at the life she left behind.  Now she can't bear her reflection in the mirror, and hasn't been with another man since Sugar left her bed the morning they rolled out to the bomb site.

When a seemingly innocuous bomb call turns into a devastating murder scene, Carol catches the case and embarks on an investigation of a series of explosions that reveal intentions far more disturbing than one-shot acts of anarchy.  The bombs are designed expressly to kill bomb technicians, and as the one tech who survived the deadliest of blasts, Carol is in for the most intense fight of her life.

Against the dazzling and lonely backdrop of contemporary Los Angeles, Robert Crais has crafted a work of ingenious depth of character, matched with a transcendent narrative velocity.  Demolition Angel is sure to take its place among the finest thrillers of the modern age.

Review: Penzler Pick, May 2000: Like many authors with ongoing characters, Robert Crais has taken a break from his famous private eye. After eight novels featuring Elvis Cole and his loyal sidekick Joe Pike, Crais has created Carol Starkey, a bomb squad veteran now doing time as a Detective-2 with LAPD's Criminal Conspiracy Section. Three years have passed since the detonation that killed Carol's partner and lover, but she is still severely scarred both mentally and physically. She can't bear to look in the mirror, and she hasn't been with another man since David Boudreaux left her bed that last morning he went to work. She gets through the day with the help of Tagamet and alcohol.

When a bomb call takes the life of another colleague, Carol begins to investigate a series of explosions that seem to be designed to exterminate bomb technicians. She soon realizes that she's "the one that got away." With the help of an FBI agent whom she loathes professionally for interfering with her job but finds attractive anyway, Carol must track down one of the most frighteningly brilliant killers of the modern age.

This edgy thriller's protagonist is one that the reader at first may have difficulty liking, but she's got a background and history that make her truly three-dimensional. One hopes that Crais, one of the handful of young crime writers capable of writing consistently luminous prose, will continue to give us characters like Carol Starkey to star in his always powerful portraits of modern-day Los Angeles. --Otto Penzler

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Demolition Angel
Publisher: Doubleday
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: 1st Edition

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