bred to kill book coverReviewed by Jessa Larsen

In a wicked twist of fate, the lives of Lucie Henebelle and Inspector Sharko have once again intertwined. They need to work together to discover the culprit behind the vicious potential homicide of Eva Louts, a promising graduate student in Paris. Initially, it looks like a case of a young student simply forgetting that her beloved primates are still wild animals with natural instincts and behaviors, but at second glance, it may be something else entirely and Sharko better find out quick.

As Sharko digs deeper, it looks like Eva was secretly researching a topic that proved to be deadly. The inspector is racing against time as he sacrifices his career and personal life to pursue the eccentric and obsessive scientist behind Eva’s research project. What exactly did she uncover that was important enough to these scientists to end her young life in such a brutal manner?

Bred to Kill is the sequel to the international bestseller Syndrome E. Lucie and Sharko have been reunited, but this time they’re traveling everywhere from the Alps to the Amazon. Franck Thilliez seamlessly combines a thriller with genius research. I thoroughly enjoyed the way I was sucked into the mystery whilst learning about scientific speculation on evolution. I’ve always enjoyed the theories about what makes people, and more specifically, serial killers, behave the way they do as well as how people and primates, as well as their strings of evolution, evolved from prehistoric to current times.

Lucie, Sharko, Eva, and various other characters throughout speculate that serial killers, as well as violent criminals in general, have a common thread passed along throughout the ages as we evolved. The gene usually manifests itself in males around 20 years old. Trademarks include being left-handed and lactose intolerant. It’s an interesting theory and I can handle the left handed trait, but I’m not inclined to agree with lactose intolerance as I believe that’s a regional mannerism rather than something genetic. But that might just be me…

I am led to believe that the novel was originally written in French and I was quite impressed by the translation. Sometimes you can tell that dialogue and mannerisms didn’t quite translate over exactly due to language and cultural barriers, but this was not a problem in Bred to Kill. I couldn’t put the book down and will definitely be looking for a copy of Syndrome E as well as any future titles.

Rating: ★★★★★ 

Jessa lives in Utah with her husband, two kids, two small chihuahuas, and a cat called Number One Boots Kitten. She balances her work as a website admin with her hobbies of watching anime and playing video games.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Penguin Group. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.