A couple of days ago I finished up Crush by Alan Jacobson, which was released on September 22nd. I originally met Alan about a year ago when he came into the store one day to talk about his debut novel, The 7th Victim. We chatted for a while about his history in researching with the FBI which had led to the creation of his recurring and impressive character, Karen Veil, an FBI profiler. He handed me an arc of the book which I read and enjoyed, and reviewed.
I remember I originally asked him if he would be doing a series involving Karen Veil, since he’d done so much research and Veil was such a great character. At that point in time he said he wasn’t sure, but that he might.
Now I’m glad to see that Veil is back with Crush and this book is better than The 7th Victim. Veil is on vacation at the start of the book in the wine country of Napa County, but then a body is discovered and even though she’s strictly “off duty,” her experience and profiling skills automatically kick into gear and she strategically maneuvers herself and get’s on the task force for the case. The brilliant title of Crush comes from the link with grapes, and crushing them for wine, and all that jazz; coupled with the fact that the “crush killer” first kills his victims by strangling them to death. Alan uses lots of place names so for any readers familiar with Napa and Sonoma counties (like I am), it’s a lot of fun recognizing the towns, places, and especially some of the wineries. With this serial killer on the loose, Veil wants to get the word out to try and catch him, but with the wine industry supporting a significant portion of the country’s economy, there are others who are very reluctant to do so.
Crush employs many different facets from government and politics, to wine county and wine drink — using real places — and a fast-paced plot line where the bodies start piling up and Veil has to do her very best to keep everyone in the loop and doing their best to find out just who this killer is.
After my initial reviewing of The 7th Victim, Alan and I have kept in touch over the year through email and Facebook, so I’ve been looking forward to Crush for some time (and was delighted to receive a copy without even asking!) and with somewhat of a cliffhanger, Alan is currently working on the third Karen Veil mystery.
While I plan to have my review for Crush up at BookBanter.net soon, I have also arranged with Alan for an interview with BookBanter which we’ll be doing on October 27th. At the moment the interview with Alan is scheduled to run December 15th.
For now, head on over to Alan Jacobson’s website where you can found out all about Crush as well as some extras and behind-the-scenes that add to the great story. And he’s currently on his tour, so check and see if he’s coming a place near you, drop by, buy a book, and say hi.