This is the eleventh Val McDermid book I've read. I stopped reading them a few years ago because I decided I couldn't tolerate the graphic torture, often sexual torture, in her books. But I like the Dr. Tony Hill and DCI Carol Jordan characters and how they've developed.
This book came up as an Amazon e-book deal for $1.99 and I bought it. So when I recently needed a book that would grab me by the shirt and drag me into it, I chose this one.
Carol wants nothing to do with Tony because she blames him for the brutal murders of her brother and his girlfriend. Tony is a police profiler and should have been able to predict what wacko Jacko Vance was going to do to get to Carol and to Tony. But he didn't. Both Carol and Tony were damaged people even before the catastrophe of Carol's brother's murder. They had begun a tentative but unconventional relationship, trusting and depending on each other in their professional and personal lives.
But when Tony is arrested for kidnapping and murdering two women who look a bit like Carol, Carol is persuaded to come out of hiding to help find the real killer.
Cross and Burn was just what I needed to distract myself. I flew through it in a few days and enjoyed it very much. It lacked the graphic violence that had put me off, so I could enjoy the fast-paced story.