Monday, February 10, 2020

An Exciting Thriller - The Third to Die

Today I'm sharing with you my thought on Allison Brennan's new book, The Third to Die.  Thanks to Harlequin Trade Publishing for inviting me to be a part of the Winter 2020 Mystery/Thriller Blog Tour.

TITLE: The Third to Die (Mobile Response Team #1)
AUTHOR: Allison Brennan
PUBLISHING DATE: February 4, 2020


An edgy female police detective…An ambitious FBI special agent. Together they are at the heart of the ticking-clock investigation for a psychopathic serial killer. The bond they forge in this crucible sets the stage for high-stakes suspense. 

Detective Kara Quinn, on leave from the LAPD, is on an early morning jog in her hometown of Liberty Lake when she comes upon the body of a young nurse. The manner of death shows a pattern of highly controlled rage. Meanwhile in DC, FBI special agent Mathias Costa is staffing his newly minted Mobile Response Team. Word reaches Matt that the Liberty Lake murder fits the profile of the compulsive Triple Killer. It will be the first case for the MRT. This time they have a chance to stop this zealous if elusive killer before he strikes again. But only if they can figure out who he is and where he is hiding before he disappears for another three years. The stakes are higher than ever before, because if they fail, one of their own will be next… 

MY THOUGHTS:  Kara Quinn is on administrative leave and visiting her grandmother in Liberty Lake when she stumbles upon a dead body while jogging. Turns out the woman she found is the victim of The Triple Killer, a serial killer with a specific MO.  Every three years, on March 3rd, a victim is killed.  For the next 6 days, two more victims also fall prey and then the killer is silent for another three years. 

Mathias Costa is busy heading up a new mobile FBI crime unit.  He and his team will travel the US and assist with cases where larger teams aren't readily available.  He isn't full prepared when he gets called out to assist with the Triple Killer case and since Kara has time on her hands, he finds her enlisting her assistance.  But can a team of qualified law enforcement agents find out what motivates the killer to take action, and more importantly, who he is and how to stop him.

I have had some good luck with thrillers lately and The Third to Die is no exception.  The story is told from several POVs and even include some chapters from the killer himself.  Perhaps it's my background in criminal justice but I do tend to enjoy procedural thrillers and it was a fun trip unraveling the case along with the agents.  The book, while lengthy, is told during a short time span which I think lends the reader to feel the urgency of the investigation right alongside the agents.

I also really liked the characters in the book.  We are introduced to some small town police who have never worked such a high profile case, along with Kara, Mathias and the criminal profiler, Catherine.  Kara is a tough cookie and has a lot of pent up resentments against the FBI.  However, she finds working with Mathias challenging and interesting.  Mathias is somewhat cocky and arrogant, but wen push comes to shove, he will admit he needs help.  Basically, the characters were flawed and I do love me some flawed characters.

I'm glad to see this is the beginning of a new series. I don't have many procedural thriller series to follow but this is definitely going on my have-to-read list.  I've read one other book from this author years ago and enjoyed it, but The Third to Die has me interested to see what books from her I might have missed out on.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Allison Brennan believes that life is too short to be bored, so she had five children and writes three books a year.

Allison has penned more than three dozen thrillers and many short stories. RT Book Reviews calls Allison “a master of suspense” and her books “haunting,” “mesmerizing,” “pulse-pounding” and “emotionally complex.” RT also said that "The Lucy Kincaid/Sean Rogan books are getting better and better!"

COLD SNAP was a finalist for Best Thriller in the Thriller Awards (ITW) and FEAR NO EVIL (2007) and COMPULSION (2015) won the Daphne du Maurier award. Allison has been nominated multiple times for RWA's Best Romantic Suspense award, and the Kiss of Death's Daphne award.

Allison recently relocated from Northern California to Arizona with her husband and two youngest children. She currently writes the Lucy Kincaid/Sean Rogan thriller series, and is launching the Mobile Response Team series in February 2020 with THE THIRD TO DIE. Catherine Coulter called it an "amazing new series" and Kirkus Reviews says Kara Quinn is "A strong and damaged protagonist as compelling as Lisbeth Salander."


  1. I'm not a great fan of cocky male heroes in books-they tend to make me DNF a book! It certainly sounds like you've enjoyed this so maybe a new series for you to follow!

    1. He's tolerable and not EXTREMELY cocky. He has other things going for him!

  2. Oh hello, new series I'm sure I'm going to enjoy! I hear on the goodness of flawed characters -- and authors who don't let the flaws take over, and still give readers something to hold on to (I just DNFed one with a character I couldn't stomach)

    1. Yea, I saw you mention that in your post. What book was it? I hope you enjoy this one if you pick it up.

  3. I really enjoy procedurals too, which probably comes from watching them on TV😁

    1. I watch a lot on TV too. My favorite is Law & Order:SVU.

  4. Yea, I love things like CSI, Law & Order, etc. I've seen SVU so many times but it's kind of like background filler now because you can always find it on somewhere.

  5. I'm glad thrillers are working well for you lately! Since I read "one of Us is lying" I realized I like thrillers with multiple POVs I totally forgot you had a background in criminal justice!!! That's so cool! Even though procedural thrillers are definitely not my thing, I'd read any crime book you'd recommend then!