Author Joanna Schaffhausen is back with her next Ellery Hathaway mystery No Mercy (in stores Tuesday, January 15th from Minotaur Books, following last year’s The Vanishing Season. It’s another thrilling story that calls upon her past and her present day. Ellery is still a mess and trying to move on with her life the best way she can. She’s a great character with a lot of flaws and potential for many books to come.
Ellery is on paid leave because she murdered someone in cold blood and won’t apologize for it. She’s been made to go to therapy as a condition to get her cop job back. She is against going but knows she has to go. There she meets other people in similar situations (victims of violent crimes). She meets Wendy who was brutally raped. She also meets Myra, who was the victim of a violent arson incident and the man who did it is about to be released from prison.
She tells Wendy she will have off the record look into her case. When she contacts the detective working the case she doesn’t learn anything new. She calls Reid (her FBI friend and man who saved her years ago) and he flies to Boston to help her do some initial investigating. It leads to investigating Wendy’s case some more and also looking into the fire many years ago that may have put an innocent man in jail.
Reed’s boss at the FBI is not happy about him being gone and puts him on notice. He was one of the investigators of the arson case years ago and he says everything was done by the book. The more they investigate the arson case seems don’t seem to be what they seem. Once Reed leaves Ellery continues to investigate Wendy’s case and gets in over her head and ends up in the hospital.
Reed flies to her side and together they continue to investigate both cases and come up with shocking leads and both cases take shocking turns.
On top of that there’s the attraction between Reed and Ellery that’s hard for them to deny. Each has issues and the question is will they act on it and will it cause issues between them moving forward?
A great second story in the series, which moved the story along and advanced the characters developments from the first book. I am excited to see where the next story goes and what will happen between Ellery and Reed in the future.