The Skin Collector
A Lincoln Rhyme Mystery
Jefferey Deaver
A Lincoln Rhyme Thriller
Granc Central Publishing 2014
430 pages

The Skin Collector is an excellent thriller by Jefferey Deaver. It features series regulars Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs and though knowledge of previous novels like The Bone Collector helps with some background details, you do not need to be familiar with the series to enjoy this latest instalment. This is a perfect novel for the summer months.

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This is a detective versus serial killer thriller so there is a certain formulaic feel to The Skin Collector. Readers are introduced to a mysterious and original killer and get to know him as the novel and killings progress. The killer, the Underground Man or, to some, the Skin Collector, taunts Rhyme to see who is smartest and eventually hits close to home. He is a worthy adversary.

The killer operates in New York City using old and long forgotten underground passages to get to his victims. He then tatoos a message on their stomachs using poison ink. Does the message refer to the killer or some grandiose plan?

There are a few twists, turns, and reveals near the end that do stretch credibility but not enough to disconnect the reader. A bit of advice though, pay close attention to the early goings on in The Skin Collector if you want to keep up with the solution.

The one thing that does not work in terms of the solve is how did the killer hide the massive tattoos on his thighs when he repeatedly needed to?

Jeffery Deaver is a dependable mystery writer and The Skin Collector, the eleventh Lincoln Rhyme thriller is no exception.

Other Jefferey Deaver titles reviewed here: Manhattan is My Beat