Vianvi Book Review Podcast #4 by Viga Boland
If there’s one thing that’s all wrong about the protagonist of Serial K by Brian Gallagher, it’s his name: Craig Breedlove. The last thing Mr. Breedlove does is breed love!
But if only that was all that was wrong with him. Craig Breedlove is a rich, narcissistic, murdering sociopath who wants to prove he’s the greatest serial killer of all time. He thrives on the fear that headlines about his gruesome kills create, and is glued to the papers and TV reports to enjoy his notoriety. When he doesn’t get the press he craves, he begins calling police, even the FBI to tease them, giving them riddles to solve to track him down.
But being a narcissist, he honestly believes that just like the best of the serial killers, he will never be caught. And that is enough to keep fans of this genre flipping the pages as fast as they can go. Along the way, though he doesn’t want one, Breedlove acquires an acolyte, a Satan-worshipping computer hacker as an accomplice. Between them, all hell breaks loose, not just in cities across the USA, but within the ranks of the FBI who are bamboozled as to how Serial K is forever able to elude them.
Watching the FBI scrambling around for clues is hilarious for Breedlove, and to a certain extent for readers. There’s no Criminal Minds BAU stars working on this case, but there’s one, Link, who thinks he is, and boy, does Breedlove show him who’s the star of this show. The more sensible, intelligent FBI agent is Lea, who is teamed up with her ex-husband, a writer, to track and nail down Breedlove. Do they succeed? You have to read the book to find out.
Brian Gallagher is a very good writer. He doesn’t waste readers’ time. The plot isn’t all that deep but it never stops moving thanks to Gallagher’s skillful use of dialogue. Characters are believable, if not all of them likeable, especially the foul-mouthed FBI agent, link. His non-stop barrage of expletives leaves his team cold, and odds are, some readers might find it hard to take, along with the very gruesome details of each murder.
Serial K is not a book for the squeamish: it’s way too gory and Craig Breedlove is way too despicable. That said, he is also laughable, and the reader does laugh at him while he’s busy laughing at others. In other words, Brian Gallagher has tossed in some humor to balance the horror. If you like this kind of writing and content, you’ll enjoy Serial K.
©Viga Boland, author and book reviewer
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