A Killer's Grace by Ronald Chapman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Chapman's A Killer's Grace grabbed me by the gut as I read the letter from Davidson. You don't follow a beginning like that up with some mediocre cheap thrills and thankfully this author knew that. A Killer's Grace is thought provoking, forcing the reader to dig deep into the judgements and preconceived ideas we all try to convince ourselves we don't have.
The premise is simple; Serial killer reaches out to journalist to expose a fatal flaw in the system. Our serial killer is the worst kind of monster and you think to yourself, here's our antagonist. Well, yes and no. Davidson is the epitome of your nightmares, by his own account, but there remains a spark of humanity within him and he is determined to prevent others like him from inflicting the same sort of damage to society. Some might say Davidson is an anti-hero. Enter Kevin Pitcairn, journalist and recipient of this letter. Pitcairn would be our protagonist, our good guy. Only we find out he's no choir boy and could pretty easily be sitting in a cell next to Davidson were it not for some dumb luck.
There is a lot going on in this book but the everything works to enhance the story rather than distract from it. I thought the relationship between Pitcairn and Maria Elena was a perfect contrast to the life Pitcairn led before he found her and AA. I was engrossed in the research into Davidson's past and mental state and then fascinated by the utter shit show that followed the publication of Pitcairn's article.
There aren't a few words one can use to accurately describe this book. It is complex to the 9th degree both literally and figuratively. I can't imagine anyone being disappointed in it nor can I fathom going untouched by the subject matter.
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