Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite
The Criminalist: A Novel of Forensic Science Suspense by John Houde is just the ideal length for a successful thriller, well-crafted, giving the reader so much to satisfy his or her curiosity and to excite his or her interest. This is a thriller that deals with one of the world’s most dangerous trades — human trafficking. Vika Koslava is a beautiful, spirited, and an alcoholic Russian model who comes to the US with her sister for an erotic photo shoot, but then her sister goes missing and she is determined to do everything to find her. Coincidentally, she meets Paul Connert, a forensic scientist who holds himself responsible for the death of his Fiancé, Anastasiya, and who believes that helping Vika can allay his pain and atone for his lackadaisical attitude that must have ensured the death of Anastasiya. The search soon escalates into a deadly game against a ruthless and powerful clique of human traffickers.
Breathtaking, fast-paced, and solidly written, The Criminalist: A Novel of Forensic Science Suspense features the science of forensics at its best. I was left in no doubt that the author has great knowledge of forensic science, which is deftly explored throughout the novel. The crime scenes are expertly described and the reader is transported into a world where the least particle can lead to heartbreaking truths. I loved the writing and the plot. John Houde has succeeded in doing the one thing I have always wanted in books — to transport the reader into the world of the characters' psychology. The characters are very realistic and they are thrust into a world that feels so real that the reader seems to walk and live in it as well. Overall, it's a satisfying read.