The Murder House
by James Patterson and David Ellis
There is a definite genetic link in some families for mental illness, diabetes, and cancer. This has been proven. But what about a genetic predisposition for evil? What if generation after generation, a child is born into the family line who enjoys killing people in the most sadistic manner possible, say by impaling them on spikes or cutting them up? Remember, there were the Borgias of Hungary, the Marquis de Sade, and other sadistic people.
The Dahlquist mansion is located on 7 Ocean View Drive in the Hamptons. It is a huge Gothic style home complete with gargoyles and spiked lattices. Winston Dahlquist, an immigrant, built this place a couple centuries ago. The house is imposing. And the rumor is that no one leaves that house alive. However, a Hollywood producer and his local squeeze aren’t afraid. They spend the night there, and because of this, Jenna Murphy gets called out to arrest the suspected murderer. The crime scene is gruesome. The murderer attacked them in such a way that they died a slow painful death, consigned to watching the other bleed out. The town’s name for the house is the Murder House.
Jenna hasn’t lived in Bridgehampton since she and her family left mysteriously when she was 8 years old. No one has ever told her why. All she knows that she has a mysterious scar in the palm of one hand and terrible nightmares. Instead she has lived her life as a successful New York police officer. That is until she comes under suspicion for skimming off the top of a drug bust. The only job she can get as a police officer is with the Bridgehampton PD, and only because her uncle is the chief of police.
She is involved in the arrest of the ex-boyfriend and that is only the beginning of the trouble she discovers. She asks too many questions about the grisly murders and ruffles some feathers. More tortured bodies keep turning up, but do they have the right man in prison? As she researches the Dahlquist family with a rookie officer and a local guy, she finds that each generation of Dahlquists has produced a male heir who has murdered and/or raped women. Can the curse be finished since Dahlquist VI left no heirs? If so, why are dead bodies continuing to be found?
The suspected list is endless and as she tries to unravel the mystery, her life is in danger more and more. Someone keeps trying to kill her, but she can’t prove it.
The creepiness in the book goes on and on. I was definitely on the edge of my seat as I would hope the victims would get away.
Fast action, mystery, and a never-ending supply of red herrings made this book hard to put down. I finished it one reading it was that good. I had to see the mystery solved. A great summer read. On vacation? Make sure you picked a safe place to sleep. Definitely 5 of 5 stars!