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The Bride Collector
Ted Dekker
Center Street 2010
448 pages

The Bride Collector isn’t your garden variety mystery novel, and that’s good.  This book by Ted Dekker is a clearly solid, interesting page turner.

On the loose, is Quinton Gauld, a demented, methodical and psychopathically brilliant serial killer who is hunting for the perfect bride to offer up as the ultimate allegiance to the almighty.

FBI agent Brad Raines has been tracking Gauld through four disturbing crime scenes which carry no trace of human presence beyond Gauld’s exceptionally beautiful young victims who are meticulously displayed like pieces of priceless art.

A sinister warning turns the gig personal.  Raines fears for those he loves, and must ratchet up the investigation to stop Gauld before the next capture.

His search leads him to a specialized facility for uniquely gifted highly intelligent individuals who are likewise mentally ill.  One, Paradise, plays a dangerous role, while she and Raines forge an unexpected bond.

What unfolds is an intense, yet deeply layered drama, where the adversaries attempt to out maneuver, out wit and out think each other in order to emerge victorious.

Dekker is good.  Dekker is very good.  He keeps the adrenaline going through every chilling twist.  There are thrills, suspense, unexpected heroes, a highly disturbed villain, and an undercurrent of emotional intensity and vulnerability that is uncommon to many mystery novels.

Dekker can make your skin crawl, yet other times there is a compassion and a deep tenderness to his words.

The mix is well done and compelling.

So much more, The Bride Collector is highly recommended.