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Creating compelling characters as well, he ensures that his audience continue to come back for more time and time again. Dealing with some of the most heinous killers, criminals and dangerous people, she looks to get the job done whatever it takes. Serving justice through her brilliant skills of deduction, she also has to deal with her own issues and skeletons in the closet, as she seeks to overcome them and get on with the case in hand.

With over six books in the series so far and counting, this popular line of novels has successfully been running for some time now. Well thought out and easily accessible, the character of Karen Vail will continue to enthrall readers for years to come. Starting the Karen Vail series off, this was to be the first book in the franchise beginning the overall narrative, it originally being published in on the 22nd of September. Setting up the central character and establishing the main crux of the action, it was to successfully introduce the protagonist of Karen Vail to her band of loyal readers for the first time.

Providing the tone for the books as well, it managed to create a sense of ambiance that was to surround the rest of the books to come in the following years. With her tough-talking ways, she is independently resourceful and single-minded, always willing to get the job done whatever it takes and make sure justice prevails.

Compelling on a number of counts, she works as an FBI profiler with an extreme aptitude for the job and has been found to be very relatable by her many readers. Meeting a variety of nasty characters along the way, she is constantly put to the test by various criminals and killers with a warped mindset and worldview. Constantly posing a challenge for her, they work to put her to the test as she must get inside the mind of another and find out how best to stop them causing anymore harm.

Stepping onto the scene is expert profiler Karen Vail who will do whatever it takes to get the job done however she can and stop him killing again. Will she able to find the killer in time, or will it be to late allowing him to take more innocent lives?


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Can she defend her case and maintain her personal life whilst preventing it from intruding upon her work? What will become of the killer as he goes out looking for the 7th victim?

The 7th Victim

Published initially on the 1st of September, , this novel marked the successful second novel after the bestselling first, as it picked up where the last left off. With the character of Karen Vail already firmly established, it manages to get deeper involved in the story as she digs deeper into the latest crime. Building upon the style and tone of the previous novel, it manages to capture the essential essence once again further enhancing and evolving that. Finding the bodies of a serial killer discarded in vineyards and caves, Karen Vail learns that this killer likes to crush their victims windpipes.

Working against the clock she must then figure out he clues fast if she is ever to catch him in time and prevent any more murders from taking place. Will she be able to find him in time, or will it be too late?

VJ Books - Karen Vail Boxed Set (Alan Jacobson)

Why is the killer killing his victims in such a manner? Set within the profiling unit of the FBI, this collection of books work well at establishing their environment with a clearly well researched and defined handling of the subject matter. In the end he actions revealed the man he could have been. View 2 comments.

Aug 03, Kathy rated it really liked it. I had not read any of Alan Jacobson's novels previous to Inmate It is a police procedural that I found really dragged along through the first third of the book. There are also description of extreme violence that I found hard to take I considered giving up on it and was very glad I didn't as the story did get more interesting and by the end of the book I couldn't put it down.

Excellent ending! There are two stories that the autho I had not read any of Alan Jacobson's novels previous to Inmate There are two stories that the author alternates between. One story takes place starting in in New Jersey. Walton MacNalley is charged with the murder of his wife.

He is eventually cleared of the crime but he is now a social outcast. He and his son drift around the country and turns to robbing banks with his young son assisting when they have no money. He ends up in Leavenworth, the prison for the worst of the worst. Later he is transferred to Alcatraz where escape risks are placed. In the main story FBI profiler Karen Vail is sent to San Francisco to assist with the investigation into a serial killer who is killing elderly couples.

The killer leaves a key behind at each crime scene. The two stories come together at the end with very surprising results. I do recommend this book if you enjoy police procedurals and can put up with some gore at the beginning. It's been several years since I read book three in this series but it only took me pages to remember why I liked it so much. Karen Vail is a fantastic character, very sarcastic and not very likable but smart as a whip. She's an FBI Profiler called out to California to work on a serial killer case involving an unsub who tortures and violently rapes elderly women then kidnaps, kills and displays the husbands at tourist sites.

Bodies are racked up faster than the coroner can get them to the morgue It's been several years since I read book three in this series but it only took me pages to remember why I liked it so much. Bodies are racked up faster than the coroner can get them to the morgue and the killer starts sending Karen personal texts. What's cool with this entry is it has tie-ins with the infamous Alcatraz escape and flashbacks every other chapter to the s following a fictional inmate who is wrapped up with the historical characters and events. A fast-paced, action-packed thriller with twists and turns that keep you guessing until the end.

Loved every word! I'll be continuing on with this series soon. Sep 24, Ray Palen rated it really liked it. Alan Jacobson knows his stuff. Having worked with the FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit for 18 years gives him the uncanny ability to get into the mind of the deranged and driven killers that haunt the American landscape. A series of horrific murders in the San Francisco area may somehow be tied to a former inmate of the long defunct Alcatraz prison.

Could the prison once kno Alan Jacobson knows his stuff. The killer is not only choosing apparently random victims but also leaving behind cryptic messages at each death scene staged in such a way to baffle and challenge the newly formed task force that is hunting him. MacNally was a small-time crook who stepped up to bank robbery and grand larceny in an effort to provide for himself and his young son, Henry.

Unfortunately, he is caught and sent to Leavenworth Prison. It is there where MacNally is forever changed by the brutality and inner workings of a penal system that represents a social microcosm of the worst human beings that society has to offer.

Inmate 1577 by Alan Jacobson

A failed prison break finds MacNally being transferred to the one prison that no one should be able to break out of Alcatraz. Meanwhile, it takes Vail and company a long time to decipher the messages the serial killer is leaving for them. With the help of some local, and somewhat disreputable, local journalists they are able to recognize that the key to catching this killer lies not in profiling his next move but by understanding what happened to him in the past.

MacNally did get out of Alcatraz and fell off the grid shortly thereafter. He had several grudges to avenge the most striking being the fact that his only son Henry committed suicide by jumping off the Bear Mountain Bridge in New York while he was imprisoned.

MacNally vowed to avenge those who wronged him both in and out of prison but could he still be the mastermind in as a senior citizen capable of committing serial murder? Jacobson will have you guessing at every turn and the finale of this exciting and thought-provoking novel will provide more than a few shocking revelations before the final page is turned. The tough-talking and quick-witted Karen Vail proves a worthy adversary but will that be enough to defeat a vengeance that has festered for many decades?


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  • Sep 14, April rated it really liked it Shelves: reads. This book was recommended to me by a friend.. This is a well written story about Walt McNally whose wife was murdered, and how he tries to pick up the pieces of his life. Walt makes many choices, in his struggle to provide for his son, Henry, and we see the consequences of his choices. How are these two stories connected? The story races you through the twists and turns of the SFPD trying to stay ahead of a psychopathic serial killer, and when they catch up to him it is a surprise to all.

    Extremely well written, I couldn't put it down until I reached the surprising conclusion! Highly recommended! Dec 29, Raymond rated it it was amazing.

    Alan Jacobson Book List - FictionDB

    This is as good as the first one which was absolutely outstanding. This series is one of the best. Jacobson is the master. Each book is written with insight into criminology that puts you right there on every page and yet each novel is different than the one before. Some authors do a book series and from one book to the next you can almost guess what's coming.

    The Karen Vail series of books gets you turning pages not really knowing what's coming next even though you do. Very refreshing. Dec 30, Jenifer Mohammed rated it it was amazing. This book was excellent. The story was enthralling, and the character development fully fleshed out. There were surprises but the clues were all laid out in advance. The story was told according to 2 chronologies - one that played out in the past that was juxtaposed with the future current time.

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    It was clever and the bringing of the past to the present was done masterfully. Excellent thriller and mystery. Jul 16, Heidi rated it really liked it Shelves: arc. This was my first Karen Vail novel and I will likely go back to read the others.

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    I enjoyed Inmate , I was unable to make a connection between the different plot lines, which is good. The ending was a nice twist. I also enjoyed that Alan Jacobson named one of the characters after my dad. It is not often you see a name like Russell Ilg in print! Jun 09, Sonja Randall rated it it was amazing. Strong, although not all likeable characters. I liked the pace and all the unexpected twists and turns. The ending was not what I expected.