Sunday, October 25, 2009
Author William R. Potter takes the reader into the heart and soul of his protagonist and into the warped mind of a psychopath. Potter’s first full length novel, Dead of Knight is told from the point-of-view of Detective Jack Staal and from the perspective of a killer who murders women on their birthdays.
Through clever use of back story, we learn that Detective Staal is suffering from post-traumatic stress after a horrific shooting. Unable to shake the horror of that day, Staal has left his position with the Vancouver PD’s homicide squad and has resurrected his career with the police service in a fictional country town called Hanson, British Columbia.
Anxious to work the biggest case of his career, Staal is forced to the outside when the Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s Integrated Homicide Teams are assigned to the case. Not one to sit on the sidelines, Staal convinces his colleagues to follow his lead and pursue a serial killer the media has dubbed Birthday Boy.
Believing he is a soldier of justice, a misguided young man has begun a callous campaign of terror. Damian Knight (Birthday Boy) is convinced of his righteousness and continues his brutal crusade of revenge. As his death count mounts, so does Knight’s courage and he soon turns his anger on a fatigued Staal. Staal and Knight play out a cat and mouse thrill ride that culminates with an epic, one-on-one meeting of cop versus killer.
Potter has created an intriguing police procedural with a strong main character, a terrific supporting cast, and a plot with twists, turns, and plenty of red herrings. I have read many books in this genre featuring a main character that is a bullet-proof, womanizing Neanderthal. However, Potter’s Jack Staal takes a pounding, both physically and emotionally. This is one author who isn’t afraid to show his hero breaking down or making mistakes. Potter has penned a captivating tale filled with plenty of tension and conflict, crisp dialogue and an unrelenting pace. He puts us in the story with vivid descriptions and scene-painting narrative.
I highly recommend Dead of Knight-A Jack Staal Mystery. It is sure to delight fans of Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta or Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch.
Real Time Publishing
By Erin Hynd for Reader’s Choice Literary Reviews
Coming in November!