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Head Wounds: A Daniel Renaldi Mystery    by Dennis Palumbo order for
Head Wounds
by Dennis Palumbo
Order:  USA  Can
Poisoned Pen, 2018 (2018)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

If you are a bit squeamish, you had better prepare yourself before you start reading Head Wounds by Dennis Palumbo. Almost anything that could be (and shouldn't be) done to a person is in this novel, just waiting to catch the reader unawares.

Daniel Rinaldi is a psychologist, contracted to the Pittsburgh Police Department. He specializes in treating victims of violent crime and is no stranger to it himself. When he and his wife were mugged ten years before, she was shot to death and he barely survived the attack.

He still dreams of her, not yet over her terrible loss. Someone appears on the scene who has just been paroled from prison. This person was once involved with Barbara, Danny's late wife. He fantasized that she loved him and stalked her until she left town to escape his attentions. He was positive that she returned his feelings of love for her.

The story gets complicated at this point, using almost every electrical new gadget available to man. High on the list are throwaway phones. The plot that unfolds will keep you turning pages as you shrink from their content - from a crucifixion to a bomb - as a vicious killer targets Daniel and those close to him.

You will like Danny. He believes in what he dies and honestly tries to help his patients. He is very concerned for their peace of mind. After ten years as a widower, he has not remarried. However, he won't turn down passion when it seeks him out.

The author uses Pittsburgh as his background. While I am not from there, I enjoyed his portrayal of that city and its environs. His descriptions of flora and fauna are beautifully written. Head Wounds is the fifth in the Daniel Rinaldi series.

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