In the Sanctuary, a cult religion’s inner-city haven from the outside world, members of the group are meeting bizarre deaths. One by one they are killed in a gruesome way that suggests Biblical revenge of some kind. Detective John Maiden returns from my earlier novel Missing Pieces to solve the case. But in the Sanctuary everyone loves everybody else. They share the same rooms, the same church, the same swimming pool and gymnasium–even the same bed, when no one’s looking. And everybody has something to hide. In the close-nit, secretive environment of the Sanctuary modern police methods and forensics are useless. Every crime scene is saturated with evidence from all the clan members. Each murder is as good as a clean kill and Maiden has to resort to his wits and experience to find the killer. Note: Some content may not be deemed suitable for readers under the age of 16.
A Clean Kill was a first for me. The success of Missing Pieces had my fans in Germany asking for another John Maiden book–something I’d never planned for. So instead of writing a new book based on some unexpected, inspired idea, for the first time I had to go away and deliberately plot and create a story. Among all the concepts I considered there was one thing I was determined to do. I reckon that modern police methods and forensic science are killing off the whodunit crime novel. Sure, there are forensic science novels and TV shows like CSI, but if you want to write a traditional crime story it’s hard to ignore the role of forensics and surveillance techniques that should play in catching the killer. I think that I came up with the answer with The Sanctuary. It’s a place filled with creepy, nasty, unhappy and untrustworthy people who live so close together it’s impossible to separate scientific evidence. Oh, and there’s a killer inside with them, too.