Blind Sight by Carol O’Connell

4/5 stars

Blind Sight, the 12th book in Carol O’Connell’s Kathy Mallory mystery series, begins with the disappearance of a nun and former child prostitute, the kidnapping of her blind nephew, and the appearance of four heartless bodies on the lawn of the mayor.  As usual in this excellent crime fiction series, we see the often-described-as-a-sociopath Detective Kathy Mallory through the eyes of her various associates as she follows the case with her usual intuitive leaps.

New York City and its underworld is a supporting character in this series, and is populated with Ms. O’Connell’s signature cast of the fabulously wealthy and the destitute, prostitutes and their clients, cops and sociopaths (and a cop who also happens to be a sociopath).  The NYPD and their most unusual detective investigate a series of random murders and search for the blind boy Jonah as they follow the trail from the mayor of New York city to members of the Catholic church.

For fans of the Kathy Mallory series, there are still bits and pieces to savor in this 12th outing.  To be honest, the resolution of the mystery was still incomprehensible even after it was explained, but the unraveling of the mystery is entertaining to follow, mainly due to the vivid supporting characters – Mallory’s partner and “garden variety drunk” Riker; brilliant, clownish, and soft-hearted Charles Butler, the man who loves Mallory; and others, like Rabbi Kaplan and chief medical examiner Dr. Slope, who have watched Mallory grow from baby sociopath to adult with varying degrees of despair.

As sociopathic and irredeemable as Mallory might seem, the author unveils just enough small but telling details to show not that Mallory is growing, but that there was always something there, just enough to know that all these people who continually break their hearts over her are justified in doing so.

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