“The Boyfriend”

“The Boyfriend” by Thomas Perry opens as readers look in on Catherine Hamilton and her friends.

“Three young women who were sophisticated, graceful, and just reaching the late peak of their beauty, they would have made a wonderful painting—one head light blond, one strawberry red, one coal black.”

Catherine has a job that pays well, but one that would perhaps shock her friends, or perhaps not. Joey, her new boyfriend, also has a job that would astonish Catherine’s friends, and even Catherine herself finds it surprising in a most alarming way.

Jack Till is a retired homicide detective, currently working as a private investigator. Readers get a sense of Jack right from the start. He needs money and to get it he needs a case. The parents of a girl who had been murdered bring him that case. They want answers, and they will pay what it costs to get those answers, now.

Till is a complex, multi-faceted character. Readers see the personal side of Till through his relationship with his daughter, but, he has another side as well. He has been hunting killers for a long time, and he has learned patience. Most people do not understand patience.

The narrative focuses on Till and the investigative process as he pursues the killer. Tension steadily builds page after page as readers and Till unravel a tangled string of clues, encounter dead ends, and meet the dead themselves. Till travels, waits, watches, and listens until he learns everything there is to know about this killer. There is an occasional chapter from a different perspective to give the reader background, insights, and other information that Till has yet to uncover.

“The Boyfriend” is a compelling story with not just twists and turns, but with sharp diversions, unexpected deviations, and a bombshell ending. This book keeps readers glued to the pages.