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Shutter man / Richard Montanari.

By: Montanari, Richard [author.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookSeries: Montanari, Richard. Jessica Balzano and Kevin Byrne: 9.Publisher: London : Sphere, 2015Description: 412 pages ; 24 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9780751549362.Subject(s): Police -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- Fiction | Serial murders -- Fiction | Philadelphia (Pa.) -- FictionGenre/Form: Thrillers (Fiction) | Detective and mystery fiction.DDC classification: 813/.54
Contents:
Detective Kevin Byrne is assigned to a series of bizarre home invasion cases with his old partner, Assistant District Attorney Jessica Balzano. They find themselves revisiting a crime from Bryne's past, something he witnessed as a child, and now that could make him the next target on a serial killers list.
Summary: In Philadelphia's most dangerous neighbourhood, Detective Kevin Byrne confronts his most frightening - and personal - case yet, alongside the new Assistant District Attorney: his former partner Jessica Balsano. The Farren family has been a plague upon Philadelphia's most dangerous neighbourhood, the Devil's Pocket, for generations. There, row after row of tumbledown houses hid dark secrets - none darker than Billy, youngest of the Farrens. Afflicted by a syndrome that means he can't recognise faces, Billy must use photographs to identify his family - and his victims. And when their lives have bled away, he takes a final, gruesome picture for his wall. But what is the meaning of the horrific ritual Billy enacts with every murder - and is there any connection to a childhood event Detective Kevin Byrne has buried so well it's hidden even from Jessica Balzano?
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

'You turn the pages as if your very life depends on it'
Daily Mail

Face your fears in the latest terrifying novel by the hugely acclaimed, bestselling master of the psychopath thriller.

The Farren family has been a plague upon Philadelphia's most dangerous neighbourhood, the Devil's Pocket, for generations. There, row after row of tumbledown houses hide dark secrets - none darker than Billy, the youngest Farren.

Afflicted by a syndrome that means he can't recognise faces, Billy must use photographs to identify his family - and his victims. And when your life has bled away, he takes a final, gruesome picture for his wall.

But what is the meaning of the horrific ritual Billy enacts with every murder? And is there any connection to a childhood event Detective Kevin Byrne has buried so well it's hidden even from his former partner Jessica Balzano?

Praise for Richard Montanari

'A relentlessly suspenseful , soul-chilling thriller that hooks you instantly'
Tess Gerritsen

'The author's elegiac tone takes the curse off this blood-drenched thriller . . . Gripping '
New York Times (the 10 best crime novels of 2016)

'A master storyteller'
James Ellroy

' Scary good!'
Lisa Gardner

'Taut, propulsive and darkly gripping, Montanari is a master of suspense'
Chris Ewan

'A specialist in serial killer tales . . . a wonderfully evocative writer'
Publishers Weekly

Amazon readers love Richard Montanari

***** 'One of the best detective stories I have ever read'

***** 'If you haven't read these books yet.... START READING THEM!'

***** 'Great plot and incredible pace. A real page turner'

***** 'I couldn't put it down - utterly absorbing and compelling!!'

***** 'The last 20 pages had me biting my nails and sitting on the edge of my chair!'

***** 'Absolutely brilliant - almost impossible to put down'

***** 'Every once and while I read a classic which I'll NEVER forget.This is a book I'll never forget'

***** 'This is a chillingly good read with a fast-paced storyline full of twists and turns'

***** 'From start to finish, you never want to stop! You have to know what happened!'

***** 'An outstanding tale with as many twists as a game of snakes and ladders'

***** 'One of the best crime/thriller writers'

***** 'Amazing'

***** 'Richard Montanari never lets you down. The ending is always a surprise'

***** 'So easy to pick up, so hard to put down'

Detective Kevin Byrne is assigned to a series of bizarre home invasion cases with his old partner, Assistant District Attorney Jessica Balzano. They find themselves revisiting a crime from Bryne's past, something he witnessed as a child, and now that could make him the next target on a serial killers list.

In Philadelphia's most dangerous neighbourhood, Detective Kevin Byrne confronts his most frightening - and personal - case yet, alongside the new Assistant District Attorney: his former partner Jessica Balsano. The Farren family has been a plague upon Philadelphia's most dangerous neighbourhood, the Devil's Pocket, for generations. There, row after row of tumbledown houses hid dark secrets - none darker than Billy, youngest of the Farrens. Afflicted by a syndrome that means he can't recognise faces, Billy must use photographs to identify his family - and his victims. And when their lives have bled away, he takes a final, gruesome picture for his wall. But what is the meaning of the horrific ritual Billy enacts with every murder - and is there any connection to a childhood event Detective Kevin Byrne has buried so well it's hidden even from Jessica Balzano?

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Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

A serial killer commits a series of strange home invasions in Philadelphia; handicapped by a rare disease that renders him unable to recognize faces, the perpetrator carries a photograph of his victims in his pocket. As Det. Kevin Byrne and assistant DA Jessica Balzano, his former partner, investigate, past crimes committed in Byrne's childhood neighborhood of Devil's Pocket raise their ugly heads to haunt the present. VERDICT Montanari's newest series offering (after The Doll Maker) includes spooky and mystical elements in this story of hardscrabble living, remorse, and renewal. © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Review

In Montanari's exceptional ninth procedural featuring Det. Kevin Byrne and ADA Jessica Balzano (after 2015's The Doll Maker), Kevin investigates a series of odd, violent home invasions scattered throughout Philadelphia. While the victims appear to have little connection, clues prove these murders aren't random. The reader knows that the killer is Michael Farren, a member of an Irish crime family with a vendetta to enforce. Michael, who calls himself Billy the Wolf, has an unusual handicap: he suffers from face blindness, which makes it impossible for him to recognize people by their faces. The murders turn out to echo a decades-old crime committed in the Devil's Pocket neighborhood during Kevin's childhood there. Montanari takes care to show the humanity in each character, even in the criminals. As Kevin's investigation intensifies, the brisk plot quickly becomes an engrossing story of a neighborhood's residents-those who escape, those who stay, and those who are buried there. Agent: Jane Berkey, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (Feb.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

Are we entering a new stage in the development of the serial-killer story? In 2014, John Twelve Hawks published Spark, a novel about a hired assassin who suffered from a psychological illness that causes its sufferers to believe they are dead. Now comes the latest installment of the Kevin Byrne/Jessica Balzano crime series, which features an assassin who suffers from a psychological disorder that makes him unable to remember people's faces (so he has to carry around a photo of his current target). Like Twelve Hawks' character, Billy the killer is a bad guy, no question, but we feel a certain amount of sympathy for him, as well as curiosity about what makes him tick. The story jumps around chronologically, with chapters set in the present day, the 1970s, and the 1940s, and the moving back and forth between past and present helps create a textured portrait not just of a troubled man but also of an entire family. Montanari is a fine craftsman, and, like most of the books in the series, this one works well as a stand-alone and as part of a larger story.--Pitt, David Copyright 2016 Booklist

Kirkus Book Review

The streets of Philadelphia swim with blood in the latest Byrne and Balzano adventure. Kevin Byrne, one of Philly's best homicide cops, and Jessica Balzano, his former partner who's become a prosecutor, team up to stop a killer who's brutally murdering people with no apparent connection. The first killings, of a family named Rousseau, leave a woman, her husband, and their teenage son dead. All three have been duct-taped to chairs and shot once in the chest. In addition, the mother's face has been cut off. Other murders follow, all identical in nature. Each time, the victim's face has been hacked off and an old linen handkerchief with a strange five-letter word written in blood is found at the scene. Witnesses also report seeing a singing woman in white nearby. Flashback to Byrne's childhood, when he and three other boys roamed the Irish neighborhood known as the Devil's Pocket. When a little girl named Catriona is murdered, the boys immediately know who killed her: a degenerate named Des Farren, the not-quite-right son of a murderous criminal family When Des is killed, Byrne has his suspicions as to the killer's identity, and the memory of the day the little girl died floods back when another Farren is implicated in the citywide killings. Montanari creates rich, interesting characters, but he spills buckets of blood and brutally murders everyone who crosses his killer's path. Fans of writers who keep the carnage to a minimum will find Montanari's bloody stories both disturbing and rife with unnecessary violence; those who like their bad guys depraved, killings graphic, and violence amped to high volume will find this and the author's other works more to their liking. Montanari researches his books well, but the almost clinical explanations of police procedure add little to the narrative and serve mostly as a vehicle to yank the reader out of the story. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.