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Cover image for The surrogate
Format:
Title:
The surrogate
ISBN:
9781605982564

9781605984056
Edition:
1st Pegasus books cloth ed.
Publication Information:
New York : Pegasus Books, 2011.
Physical Description:
438 pages ; 24 cm
Number in series:
1.
Summary:
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 laying spreadeagled, 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 evil acts. 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?
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MYS CARVER
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Summary

Summary

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?


Author Notes

Tania Carver lives in the south of England with her husband and two children. She is the author of The Surrogate, The Creeper , and Cage of Bones , all available from Pegasus Books.


Reviews 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

In Carver's impressive debut, an intense British police procedural, Colchester Det. Insp. Philip Brennan and his team investigate the gruesome murders of pregnant women whose unborn children are cut from their bodies. In one instance, the baby may still be alive. When psychologist Marina Esposito, who once had an affair with Phil, contributes her profiling expertise, Marina and Phil have to be careful not to compromise the investigation as they did the last time they worked together. Though they try to maintain a professional distance, Marina and Phil, who was abused as a child but later found a loving foster family, are still drawn to each other. Meanwhile, Marina has found out she's pregnant; indeed, one of the victims was in her pregnancy yoga class. Tension increases as the killer's sordid secrets unfold. Carver never crosses the line into gratuitous violence, while myriad clues and surprising twists keep the reader off-kilter. Fans of Mo Hayder, Chelsea Cain, and Karin Slaughter will find much to like. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Kirkus Review

Carver's debut novel, a thriller with a decidedly British flair, isn't for the squeamish or easily frightened.Something's decidedly not right in Colchester: Four women, three of them pregnant, have been brutally murdered. In the cases of the pregnant victims, the murderer cut the babies from their mothers' wombs and police believe the last child is still alive. The case falls to Detective Inspector Phil Brennan, chief investigating officer of the Major Incident Squad (the British equivalent of chief of detectives). Brennan and his officers, Anni Hepburn and Clayton Thompson, are trying to make sense of killings so brutal that even veteran officers find themselves sickened by the gory crime scenes. Colchester is unprepared for the homicides; it's a peaceful, family-oriented place where homicides like these simply don't happen. Officials, scrambling to solve the killings and find the missing baby, call in psychologist Marina Esposito. Marina is Phil's former lover; they met over a case that turned sour and dangerous. Marina moved on and is, in fact, pregnant herself, although she's not yet showing and doesn't share her news. Soon, the investigation takes them to the last victim's strapping former boyfriend and a woman with secret and deadly ties to police. While Phil, Marina and other investigators race against time to save the life of the infant, the killer is out again, looking for another victim. Graphic violence may turn off readers who prefer their thrillers less bloody, but the action is both convincing and necessary to the narrative arc. What's less convincing is the plodding pace at which the police move in this case, with Marina providing dubious expert input, but plenty of emotional conflict. The book, a success in Europe, may also prove too heavily laden with English colloquialisms for American audiences. No attempt has been made to explain much of the slang, leaving those unfamiliar with the King's English scratching their heads.A good premise that's long on promise, but the choppy writing, dominated by melodramatic one-liners, and stilted repetition of phrases (no one simply drinks anything, instead they take mouthfuls of their drinks) prove more distracting than thrilling.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

*Starred Review* This stunning Brit import seems to start out too conventionally. Woman answers nighttime knock at door; blade flashes. Then more stock stuff. The police hate their boss. Two of the coppers have had an affair. The DI and the consulting psychologist were lovers once. Readers who think there's too much soap opera in the modern crime novel should be patient. This one uncoils slowly, languidly, like a python. You're trapped in its embrace before you realize it. Someone is killing late-term pregnant women and removing their unborn children; unfortunately, the police may be hounding the wrong man. Our sense that the authorities are being manipulated is borne out in blood, while a creepy story of ambiguous sexual identity surfaces. Carver's expert timing is aided by her prose, deceptively laconic but with a constant forward push. Everything, it turns out, is done for a reason. The dalliances between members of the police force, for example, play a disturbing part in the criminal's scheme. Similarly, other hoary plot devices are spun until they scream, and even the Perils of Pauline ending works enough startling changes to keep you up past lights-out.--Crinklaw, Do. Copyright 2010 Booklist


Library Journal Review

A serial killer is on the loose in Colchester, England, where pregnant women are being brutally slain, their babies ripped from their wombs. Veteran officer Phil Brennan is desperate to solve the mystery. After the third such murder occurs, this time with the baby almost certainly taken alive, Phil and his team call upon their colleague, psychologist Marina Esposito, to assist in profiling and capturing the killer. Pregnant, Marina is drawn deeper and deeper into the hunt for a monster. As the web of violence grows, Marina finds herself the target of unspeakable evil. Will she and Phil stop this killer before yet another woman loses her life? VERDICT This well-written debut novel grips the reader from the start, with plenty of violence, gore, and psychological suspense. Fans of psychological thrillers on the gritty side will find this title appealing. Recommended.-Amy M. Davis, Kent State Univ. Lib., Columbus, OH (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.