Sunday, November 21, 2010

Peccavi: The Mephisto Club by Tess Gerritsen

With The Surgeon, Tess Gerritsen gave us a killer with the fondness of blood. In The Apprentice, Warren Hoyt returns to haunt Jane Rizzoli's life - teaming up with another brutal killer. Rizzoli also partner's up with a new pathologist, Maura Isles. The Sinner brought us a desperate man wanting to hide his secrets. With Body Double, we learn of the monsters that lurk in our past. Vanish shed some light on the brutality of human trafficking and conspiracy theory. Now with The Mephisto Club, Gerritsen takes us into the dark world of mythology and dead rites. 

Peccavi, Latin for "I have sinned," is found at a grisly crime scene on Christmas Eve. The victim, Lori-Ann Tucker, is laid out in several locations in the house. It's the sort of crime scene that Detective Jane Rizzoli never wants to witness again. Along with partner Detective Barry Frost, Jane leads pathologist, Dr. Maura Isles, down the path of a madman, one they've never encountered before in their two-and-a-half years as friends. Digging deeper, they're led to an almost unknown group of people - The Mephisto Foundation - whose sole mission in life is to hunt demons. When members of their group start to fall victim to the madman, they fear the worse: They feared that their greatest fears has arise from the depths of Hell.

Gerritsen brings back a few old friends from novels past, including Father Daniel Brophy - as Maura Isles's love interest - and Dr. Joyce P. O'Donnell - the bitch who seems to turn up in every even number novel of the series. New characters include Anthony Sansone - multimillionaire member of the Mephisto Foundation - Gottfried Baum - also a member - and Lily Saul - who is running from a dark past.

The novel is deeply rooted in Christian, as well as other, mythology - mostly concerning demons and the Nephilim - the hybrid offspring of angels and humans. You don't need any background to these subjects to enjoy the book, luckily. Adding in characters who studied the significance into the plot line, Gerritsen made it easy to grasp (no matter your dogmatic preference).

Background of our killer is included in the text - much like Warren Hoyt's thoughts in the first two novels and Mila's (although she wasn't the killer) in Vanish.

At first, I wasn't too impressed with the idea of the Mephisto Foundation and its work. However, the open ending of the new team leaves me wondering if Tess Gerritsen ever plans on giving them their own series (which would be great). While the novel's plot line ends, several of the subplots are left unresolved - such as, Jane's parents' marriage and the relationship between Daniel and Maura.

All in all, the novel is worth the read - especially as someone gets her just desserts and two people fall at the hands of human nature.

I'm off to start the seventh book in the Rizzoli and Isles series - The Keepsake. Until next time, keep on huntin'!

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