Braving The Graveyard Shift

Review of Mortal Wounds; Max Allan Collins; Pocket Books – Simon & Schuster; Rs 217; pp 674

– Shana Susan Ninan

Based on the CBS series that enraptured crime thriller fans worldwide and kept them glued to the TV, Mortal Wounds is a tri-novel CSI volume that you can count on to be a totally exciting read. Iowa-based Max Allan Collins – a writer of crime, mystery, historical thrillers and detective novels, movie scripts and songs – weaves the plots for the three novels high and swift.

Taking off from characters from CSI, the three novels and their crime scenes are based mostly in the sultry showgirl-town of Vegas. Two to three crimes keep the graveyard shift CSIs occupied for most part of their day, or rather, night. Braving all the wash-ups by the killers, near-clear crime scenes, cold trails and a boss breathing down their necks about too much overtime clocked in, the doctors and detectives prove their mettle. And, how!

From the ‘double tap’ cold-blooded assassin in Double Dealer and the suspected wife-killer in Sin City to the hard-a**, love-struck waitress in Cold Burn, and more, the killers in the three novels have plenty of oomph to keep the reader guessing. Not to mention all the false trails that lead the detectives, as well as the readers, to blank walls and drive them crazy.

Movie scripts, back episodes and TV material from the television series – as mentioned in the Author’s Note – helped Collins give us an edge-of-the-seat thriller book! Collins has a way with words: rarely goes overboard with the jargon and keeps the dialogues quick and witty, some sarcastically enough, to make you mouth them long after you’ve moved to another para. It’s almost like watching the hour-long program on TV, minus the sound effects. Can’t say that, though, as the background sounds and effects does ring in your head when and where the plot thickens.

A humungous fan of the CSI series myself, I wish I’d written this book. Hmmm…

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Braving The Graveyard Shift , 7.0 out of 10 based on 7 ratings

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This entry was posted on Friday, February 4th, 2011 at 10:24 pm and is filed under Crime, Reviews, Television. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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