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The Debt Collector    by Lynn Hightower order for
Debt Collector
by Lynn Hightower
Order:  USA  Can
Dell, 2001 (2000)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

In her fourth novel, The Debt Collector, Lynn Hightower has brought suspense to a new level. Cincinnati police detective Sonora Blair is called to a home invasion to find a family slaughtered. The action takes off running and doesn't stop until the last page.

As the plot unfolds, ex-cons erupt from the pages. Interaction between police officers help to explain how they keep their cool when faced with the horrors of their jobs, and how they lose their cool when they can't face any more. A collection agency moves into the spotlight. Sonora's two children play a large part in her motivation to clean up crime. Politics within the system threaten to throw everyone off track. The psychology of the crime and of the persons involved is especially frightening.

The characterizations excel, bringing believable people to the story (although, I wouldn't want to meet some of them in a dark alley). The story is tightly written with almost no unnecessary words. The dialogue flows easily. The climax is a shocker. The Debt Collector is not a book to be read before falling asleep.

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