Deadeye by Meredith DoenchDeadeye by Meredith Doench is the third book in the intriguing Luce Hansen thriller series.

Special Agent Luce Hansen is enjoying a well-deserved Thanksgiving vacation with her lover, Dr. Harper Bennett. However, the long running trails and wonderful kayaking adventures came to an abrupt halt from the moment she found out that Deadeye, a serial killer who is well-known for his deadly accurate hits has escaped from a maximum security prison. Timing is everything and the timing of this particular case is awful in Luce’s opinion because Harper wants to have a deeper connection with her. Harper also wants to be reassured of Luce’s safety while she is on the job but Luce isn’t sure she has it in her to give Harper what she truly desires.

Even though her relationship seems like it is on the verge of falling apart, Luce won’t rest until she catches Deadeye. Unfortunately for Luce, Deadeye returns to his old killing grounds in Simmons County and two brothers were shot while they were leisurely jogging along a deserted country back road. Luce is determined to stop Deadeye from claiming more lives but Deadeye is a mastermind when it comes to flying below the radar and he makes it his business to toy with Luce and her team by being ten steps ahead of them in every way. Things take a turn for the worse when Luce is cut off from her team while she searches for Deadeye in the dense woods of Simmons County and she has to fight against her fears and insecurities in order to stay alive. When Harper realizes that Luce has been cut off from her team, she is distraught and she decides to lead the manhunt to find her lover before Deadeye finds her first.

Will Harper be able to find Luce and get her out of the forest before she becomes Deadeye’s next victim?

The Characters

Special Agent Luce Hansen has her hands full with trying to capture a notorious serial killer called Deadeye and she is also trying to give the new and fragile relationship she has with Harper a fair chance. There’s no U-Hauling in Luce’s world because she likes to take things slow and she doesn’t wear her heart on her sleeve. I have got to say that there were a few times that I got so frustrated with the way Luce treated Harper sometimes because she behaved as though she resented being in a relationship with her. On the other hand, I admired her quick wit and the way she gives her all to whatever case she is currently working on.

Dr. Harper Bennett is a forensic pathologist and she just wants to help her lover, Luce in any way she can even though she may come across as an extremely bossy woman. Harper deserves the highest of fives because she is not afraid to go after what she wants with her whole heart and she will do anything in her power to protect Luce from experiencing any kind of emotional or physical trauma. I think I need to star in the next book in this awesome series because I have no qualms about turning up by Harper’s house with a U-Haul!

The Writing Style

I must tip my coffee cup to Meredith Doench because she started off this captivating story with a big bang and I was reluctant to put my kindle down to be a responsible adult and go to work on time. There’s nothing that I love more than getting sucked into a thriller with a psychological twist! This story was told through Luce Hansen’s point of view and I got unrestricted access to her turbulent emotions and her conflicting thoughts about the case. I was beyond pleased to tag along with Luce as she roamed the Simmons County landscape looking for any lead she could find and I was able to get a feel for the small town and the quirky individuals who live there.

The Pros

I never thought that tracking the whereabouts of a serial killer would become the highlight of my night but I was cuddled up in a fleece blanket on my couch while I was cheering Luce Hansen and her team on (Between Luce and myself, I don’t know who was more anxious for Deadeye to be captured and placed behind bars where he certainly belongs!)

The Cons

This story is definitely enthralling but I had some doubts about the decisions that were made by some of the main characters. I also thought that the author should have expanded a few scenarios between Luce and Harper because there were a lot of unresolved issues in their relationship that should have been dealt with and I felt as though I didn’t get enough insight into their personal lives.

aprils favourite booksThe Conclusion

If you’re a huge fan of thrillers that feature serial killers and determined special agents who are hell bent on capturing them, then I can definitely say that you need to read this story and get in on all the action! Even though this story is the third book in the series, it can be read as a stand-alone because the author did a fabulous job of filling me in on what went on in the previous books. However, if you want to have a greater understanding about what makes Luce Hansen and Harper Bennett tick, then I suggest you start with the first book.

Excerpt from Deadeye by Meredith Doench

“Hansen here.”

“It’s Sanders.”

For a few seconds, neither of us spoke. Then he added, “Gobble, gobble.”

I laughed at Colby Sanders’s sad attempt at a joke and suddenly missed him. His voice was one I never wanted to hear on vacation, but if I had to, at least he always made me smile. “What’s up, Sanders?”

“I hope you’re having a good Thanksgiving down there,” he started, “but we have a situation. A prison break at Hartford Correctional.”

My mind turned over everything I knew about the Ohio prison: high security, older prison, with some disturbing reports of officer violence toward inmates. Then it hit me. “No, Sanders. Please tell me this has nothing to do with Deadeye.”

His silence on the other end of the line told me it did.

I looked over at Bennett who mouthed and gestured What? to me. “He’s a high risk inmate. How could this even happen?”

“A transport situation and help from the outside. David Johnson, aka Deadeye, slit both wrists pretty good. No medics on campus today due to the holiday, so he was rushed to the local hospital. Turns out his latest fiancé is a nurse at the hospital and helped plan it all.”

I pressed the heel of one hand against my forehead, the place where a headache teased me. Holidays, I knew, tended to be a time on prison campuses when officials let their guard down, when fewer eyes focused on the inmates. Clearly I wasn’t the only one who knew that secret. “How long has he been gone?”

“The last documented sighting was over four hours ago. Search teams are out, but nothing yet.” I heard the flick of a lighter, and I imagined him igniting the end of his cigarette. “This is big, Hansen. We need to catch him before the media gets ahold of this one. We need to get out to that prison as soon as possible.”

Sanders went on about the flight details out of Charleston, and I thought about Deadeye. I knew his case well. The serial predator had been hunting humans long before I joined the BCI and was finally apprehended in Southeast Ohio after murdering at least six victims, hunter style, in the rural hunting areas of Simmons County. Deadeye was better than a good shot—generally the victims were taken with a single bullet through the head. And he always removed and took with him the victim’s bloodstained shirt, his trophy of death. Deadeye loose and on the streets was more than dangerous—he was explosive.

“Hansen? You with me?”

“Yeah.” I blinked myself back to focus. “I’ll see you in a few hours.”

I hung up and looked out over the glass-calm water. The evening breeze felt good against my face.

“Hansen?” Bennett maneuvered her kayak even closer to mine. “What’s going on?”

“Deadeye,” I said without looking at her.

Her eyes widened at his name. “What do you mean?”

“He’s on the lam.”

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The Luce Hansen Thriller Series

Crossed: Book 1

Forsaken Trust: Book 2

Deadeye: Book 3

Bits and Bobs

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Note: I received a free review copy of Deadeye by Meredith Doench. No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site

About the author

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Sheena is the founder of The Lesbian Review.

She discovered lesbian fiction when she was 19. Radclyffe and Karin Kallmaker soon became favourite authors and she spent a large part of her hard earned income on shipping books from to her home in South Africa.

Over the years she became frustrated with purchasing mediocre lesbian fiction feeling like it was a waste of her money and time. And so she decided to share only the best books and movies with lesbians who are looking for only the best. And so, The Lesbian Review was born