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Publisher's Summary

Once, Special Agent Smoky Barrett hunted serial killers for the FBI. She was one of the best, until a madman terrorized her family, killed her husband and daughter, and left her face scarred and her soul brutalized. Turning the tables on the killer, Smoky shot him dead, but her life was shattered forever. Now Smoky dreams about picking up her weapon again. She dreams about placing the cold steel between her lips and pulling the trigger one last time. Because for a woman who's lost everything, what is there left to lose?
She's about to find out.
In all her years at the Bureau, Smoky has never encountered anyone like him, a new and fascinating kind of monster, a twisted genius who defies profilers' attempts to understand him. And he's issued Smoky a direct challenge, coaxing her back from the brink with the only thing that could convince her to live.
The killer videotaped his latest crime, an act of horror that left a child motherless, then sent a message addressed to Agent Smoky Barrett. The message is enough to shock Smoky back to work, back to her FBI team. And that child awakens something in Smoky she thought was gone forever.
Suddenly the stakes are raised. The game has changed. For as this deranged monster embarks on an unspeakable spree of perversion and murder, Smoky is coming alive again, and she's about to face her greatest fears as a cop, a woman, a mother, and a merciless killer's next victim.
©2006 Cody McFadyen (P)2006 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"First-time novelist McFadyen writes like an old pro." (Booklist)
"McFadyen's writing is crisp and smart, and his scenes pack a visceral punch without being cheap or exploitative." (Publishers Weekly)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Jesse on 07-20-06

Good, but...

This old Marine was almost moved to tears by some of the passages in this story. And even I, no stranger to gruesome scenes on the battlefields of Vietnam, was shocked at the violence and depravity displayed by the villian. And I must admit that I usually don't care for female readers of mystery and detective fare but Carolyn McCormick does a fantastic job.

The story moves fast and the characters are engaging but there's a problem, especially with this abridged version. The transition from discovery, evidence gathering and interaction with the antagonist to the final climax is too sudden and seems to leave a lot of details out. As well, the developing relationship with Smokey's ex-secret service pal is given short shrift as is his role in the drama. He really contributes little to the plot other than sex.

My overall recommendation is if you want a quick listen and a fast paced and engaging story this is it. There seem to be many missing details that call out loudly for an unabridged version and I would hope they produce one. A great first novel. I subtract one star for the abridgement and a few silly but minor plot elements. Excellent reader.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By Patricia on 04-29-07


Shadow Man was by far one of the most needlessly gruesome books I have read - violence for the sake of violence involving women and children!

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