Saturday, August 9, 2014
THE COMPETITION by MARCIA CLARK
Once again Marcia Clark has written a timely and worthwhile novel about ADA Rachel Knight and her friends. This one begins with a school shooting in which the body count outdoes Columbine or Sandy Hook, so be forewarned that this could be too hard for you personally to take. On the other hand, Knight and Bailey Keller, her investigator, consult frequently with psychiatrists as they try to stop the killers so there is much in this well worth your time to think about.
At first it seems the two shooters have committed suicide in the library trying to copy the Columbine shooters, but early on the police realize the bodies are not the shooters. They have somehow gotten away. They seem to be in competition with Columbine and Sandy Hook, possibly even the Aurora theater shooting. They obviously try to kill more people and escape to kill again. This unleashes a reign of terror with the media hot on the heels of the authorities who want to keep the most frightening facts quiet.
The plot is an exercise in frustration, particularly for Knight and Keller. They want desperately to stop the killers before they kill again, but not only do they not know where the shooters are, they aren't absolutely sure who they are.
I did appreciate the fact that Knight doesn't obsess so much about food and her privacy as she did in previous stories. She has enough to worry about with the case. Thankfully she also has her relationship with Graden on an even keel. Nice to have everyone happy in love while the plot takes center stage.
I have one little quibble about this series of four Rachel Knight books and that is the covers. Whoever chose the covers certainly didn't do Marcia Clark any favors. If I had been shopping in a book store, I wouldn't have selected these books simply because of the cover art which strikes me as cheapening the books. As it was, I took advantage of a deal on Netgalley and didn't even look at the covers until after I had received them.