Five years ago, three young victims were found murdered, posed like little angels. No witnesses, no evidence left behind. The Sleeping Angel Killer called his despicable acts 'the perfect crimes.' The case nearly destroyed homicide detective Kitt Lundgren's career-- because she let the killer get away.
Now the Sleeping Angel Killer is back.
But Kitt notices something different about this new rash of killings-- a tiny variation that suggests a copycat killer may be re-creating the original 'perfect crimes.' Then the unthinkable happens. The Sleeping Angel Killer himself approaches Kitt with a bizarre offer: he will help her catch his copycat.
Kitt must decide whether to place her trust in a murderer--or risk falling victim to a fiend who has taken the art of the perfect murder to horrific new heights.
The Sleeping Angel Killer provides the chilling focus to Spindler's 12th bloodcurdling romantic thriller (after Killer Takes All). Kitt Lundgren and Mary Catherine "M.C." Riggio of the Rockford, Ill., VCB (Violent Crimes Bureau) vow to catch a serial killer who sets the suffocated bodies of 10-year-old girls in their own beds, dressed like angels in frilly white nightgowns, hair spread out on their pillows and pink lip gloss applied postmortem to their mouths. Spindler's setting of a "meat-and-potatoes" Midwest town provides a fresh background for two believable and very cool investigators. Kitt, a recovering middle-aged alcoholic, tried and failed to catch the murderer five years earlier, during a 2001 killing spree, while her own child was dying of leukemia and her marriage was falling apart under the strain. Now, when eerily similar crimes recur, someone calls Kitt, identifying himself as the original killer and the new perp as just a copycat. M.C., an ambitious, distrustful newbie, is assigned to help Kitt with the investigation. The detectives must overcome their personal problems in order to catch the monsters, a task culminating in a breathless finale. (June)
Copyright (c) Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
-- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . GOOD BUT NOT THE BEST
Posted March 31, 2011 by KW , LAGRANGE GAThe author is very talented, and worth reading, but this was not her best effort. The story line does keep you turning pages, but the character development and action was a bit weaker than most of her books. Good airplane book but not for a long stormy weekend.
September 01, 2007
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Excerpt from Copy Cat by Erica Spindler
Rockford, Illinois Tuesday, March 5, 2001 1:00 a.m.
The girl's hair looked silky. He longed to feel it against his fingers and cursed the latex gloves, the necessity that he wear them. The strands were the color of corn silk. Unusual in a child of ten. Too often, as the years passed, the blond darkened until settling on a murky, dishwater color that only bleach could resuscitate.
He cocked his head, pleased with his choice. She was even more beautiful than the last girl. More perfect.
He bent closer, stroked her hair. Her blue eyes gazed lifelessly up at him. Breathing deeply, he let her sweet, little-girl scent fill his head.
Mustn't leave anything for them.
The Other One insisted on perfection. Always pushing him. Demanding more. And more.
Always watching. Every time he looked over his shoulder, the Other One was there.
He felt himself frown and worked to smooth the telltale emotion from his face.
My pretty baby. Most beautiful creation.
The woman detective, Kitt Lundgren, had coined the name Sleeping Angel Killer. The media had jumped on it.
The name pleased him.
But not the Other One. Nothing, it seemed, pleased him. Quickly, he finished arranging the scene. Her hair. The nightgown he had chosen just for her, with its pink satin bows. Everything had to be just so.
And now for the finishing touch. He took the tube of pale pink lip gloss from his pocket. Using the wand, he applied a coat of the gloss to the girl's lips. Carefully, smoothing, making certain the color was even.
That done, he smiled at his handiwork. Good night, my little angel. Sleep tight.
Tuesday, March 5, 2001 8:25 a.m.
Violent Crimes Bureau detective Kitt Lundgren stood in the doorway to the child's bedroom, a queasy sensation in the pit of her stomach. Another girl was dead. Murdered in her own bed while her parents slept just down the hall.
Every parent's worst nightmare.
But for these parents, this family, a nightmarish reality. The sounds of a scene being processed swirled around her. The click of a camera shutter, a detective on his cell phone, a muttered expletive, conversations.
Familiar sounds. Ones she had become accustomed to along with losing her squeamishness years ago.
But this was a child, the second victim in six weeks. Another ten-year-old girl.
The same age as her Sadie.
At the thought of her daughter, her chest tightened. Kitt fought the sensation, fought to keep focused on this child. On nailing the monster who had killed her.
He'd left the first scene eerily clean. Now they had another chance. Maybe this time the bastard had screwed up.
Kitt entered the bedroom. She moved her gaze over it, taking in the girlish interior. Walls painted a delicate blush pink. White provincial furniture, a canopy bed. Ruffled white eyelet curtains that matched the canopy. A shelf of American Girl dolls. She recognized Felicity; Sadie owned the same one.
In fact, the room was a near replica of Sadie's. Move the bed from the right side of the room to the left, add a desk in the corner and change the paint color from pink to peach.
Focus, Kitt. This isn't about Sadie. Do the job.
She glanced to her right. Her partner, Brian Spillare, had already arrived. He stood with Detective Scott Snowe, one of the Identification Bureau detectives. There were nine detectives and a supervisor in the ID Bureau. Unlike most big, urban PDs, crime scene techs in the Rockford Police Department were sworn officers, highly trained in all areas of evidence collection. ID processed the scene for fingerprints and trace evidence, collected blood and analyzed blood splatter and spray, retrieved bullets and casings, and ran ballistic checks. They had also been known to collect insects and larvae from corpses, whose life cycles aided in the determination of time of death. In addition, the ID guys were responsible for diagramming and photographing every scene and attending every autopsy, which they also photographed.
The fun never stopped for those guys.
After recovering the evidence, they shipped it to the state crime lab, located just down the street from the Public Safety Building, or PSB, as they called the structure that housed not only the Rockford PD, but the sheriff's department, city jail and the coroner's office as well.
The deputy chief of detectives had sent the entire ID Bureau to the scene. Kitt wasn't surprised. Two dead children in six weeks was a very big deal in this family-first industrial town that averaged only fifteen murders in an entire calendar year--none of those typically blond, blue-eyed girls safely tucked into their beds.