Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Surrogate by Tania Carter

by:  Tania Carter
published by:  Pegasus Books
publish date:  Sept 12, 2011

A shocking double-murder scene greets Detective Inspector Philip Brennan when he is called to a flat in Colchester. Two women are viciously cut open and lying spread-eagled, one tied to the bed, one on the floor. The woman on the bed has had her stomach cut into and her unborn child is missing. But this is the third time Phil and his team have seen such an atrocity. Two other pregnant women have been killed in this way and their babies taken from them. No one can imagine what sort of person would want to commit such horrible crimes.When psychologist Marina Esposito is brought in, Phil has to put aside his feelings about their shared past and get on with the job. But can they find the killer before another woman is targeted?

This had to be one of the most graphically disturbing books I've read in a long time. Violence to pregnant women is kind of a given from the synopsis. I was prepared for that. But the violence shown at times towards the babies I had a hard time dealing with.  There was also a character in the book named Hester that had a bit of a problem with self-mutilation.  That was pretty much icking me out. 

My other issue with this book was with Marina. She was kinda loose with her morals. She seemed to be a bit of a bed hopper which is a little strange considering she was pregnant.  It's bizarre to bring up the issue of morals in a slice em dice em murder mystery but it really stood out to me in this book.  I kept wondering what was wrong with her that she couldn't forgive Phil (for something that he didn't do wrong in the first place in my mind) or just get over it and stick with the guy she was with.  In reading into the back story, it sounded like that was her pattern of behavior. 
All that said, it was a pretty good mystery/thriller. I would probably pick up another book by Tania Carver.  This is the first in the Marina Esposito series.  Two other books have been released in the UK, but so far they haven't made their way to the US.   I'm curious to see if Marina straightens up once her baby is born.

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