Author: Alexander Hartung
Translator: Steve Anderson
Publisher: Amazon Crossing
Published Date: January 5th 2016
Genre: Mystery, Crime, Suspense
Late one night, a man calls the local emergency line. He’s in a cemetery, and he’s just discovered a freshly dug grave marked with a wooden cross bearing his name. The dispatcher thinks it’s the ravings of a drunk—until the police find the man’s body the next day.
What seemed like a morbid prank soon becomes a living nightmare for Berlin detective Jan Tommen. Recently reinstated to the force after a harrowing case’s tragic conclusion, Jan enlists his friends—debt collector Chandu, hacker Max, and medical examiner Zoe—to help. Yet the unconventional team can’t get any closer to finding the killer, and new open graves keep turning up, each with a promise of murder. Can they find the cunning killer before the deadly predictions are fulfilled?
"They were dealing with a master planner. Insane, to be sure, but well organized and not easily unnerved. Psychopaths like this were the toughest to catch."This is apparently the second book in a series which I didn't realize until about a quarter of the way though the book, when certain things started to be mentioned that seemed like we should have known something about them. While I don't think you have to read the first book to be able to enjoy the second one if you want to I would suggest doing that before you read this one because it will spoil the first one for you. (I would like to read the first one, but will wait awhile so I don't remember all of the details from this book as vividly.)
Now onto reviewing this book.
Imagine going to put flowers on your significant others grave and next to them where you one day will be buried, you see a painted cross with your name and the date you will die on it. Of course the next thing you will do is to call 911 and tell them what's happening. You tell the operator what's happening and at first they think you're lying and that this is just some prank. Very quickly though the operator will see that you are really freaking out and this is not some prank call. They tell you to take pictures of what you see and come down to the police station where they will help you and keep you safe. That's what happened to Dr. Bernhard Valburg. But instead of doing what the 911 operator asked he went home because he was panicked. This panicked choice cost him his life and started off the murder investigation for Detective Jan Tommen.
Dr. Bernhard Valburg murder is the start of what appears to be a serial killer who is very strategic and leaves zero evidence behind.
Detective Jan has the help of: Zoe the pathologist, Chandu the muscle and Max the computer tech intern.
With two more murders that happen in the same way and no DNA evidence or clues on how the victims connect or any signs of who the killer could be, the group starts to get dismayed. Finally Max starts to figure out how exactly the three murders are connected, when another cross with a date appears in a cemetery. This time its a Ukrainian Diplomat who appears to have no connection to the other three. Jan quickly realizes that if the Diplomat dies any chance of them catching the killer without other countries interfering will be over.
I'm not going to say anymore though due to spoilers. Lets just say though that from there on the case takes many unexpected turns.
I can't wait for the next installment in this series and I would really recommend anyone who likes crime novels that are very fast paced but not to gruesome with detail should check this book out.
P.S. you can even enter a Goodreads giveaway that goes through the 5th for this book here.
Thank you to Netgalley and Amazon Crossing for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book.