Her final breath

by Robert Dugoni

Read time: about 4 minutes

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Robert Dugoni is one of my prized discoveries this year. I read the third book in the Tracy Crosswhite series and knew that I am going to read more by him!So here is what I think of the second book in the same series.


With a stark red background that is both a symbol of femininity and crime, it has a knotted rope on it. A critical element in the story - the cover gives us enough information without being too revealing of what lies ahead for the reader. The title and the author’s name are bold and pleasant, making it an appealing cover overall.


While Tracy is the lead in this one too, other than her there is her boyfriend , Dan who plays a significant role , her team of police officers, all of whom make it a intimate affair - as if you were to be watching a TV series that ardently binge on.

Apart from these repeating characters , there are the victims- who are all dancers, and the management of the dance clubs they work at.


There is a murder of a dancer ,who is hogtied and tortured , and is brushed off as a standalone murder . On deeper investigation , it starts looking like the work of a serial killer. Could he be back after a break ? Or is someone imitating him ? While someone is stalking Tracy , she is engrossed in the investigation with her career at stake , as someone within the police department is churning the wheels against her . The murderer continues his sprawl , and is on a spree, killing dancers in his signature style , giving him the nickname of “The cowboy killer” . The entire City is shaken , and the killer is getting bolder with each success. Tracy doesn’t have much time as she is on the hunt for the killer , with little knowledge that she might be his next target. The investigation hogs the spotlight and adds more hurdles to the solving of this crime. Will this serial killer be caught ? Or will he remain unharmed while Tracy’s career tumbles down ? The riveting narration , will have you at the edge of your seat throughout.

Good Points

The book is intriguing from the very first page! Robert has a way with these stories , as he is so well aware of the functioning of the Police Department , and the research that he puts in , reflects in the flawless plot. The confidence emanating from the story , comes from the fact that he has his facts and research in place! The culprit is unexpected and parallel sub-plots that are running simultaneously make it all the more interesting (without seeming like an entangled mess!) . The sense of familiarity due to the recurring characters , makes you feel right at home. Lastly , the whole stalker angle has you watching your own back , and it adds the right amount of creepiness to the already disturbing plot.

Bad Points

It is a fast paced , well written mystery that keeps you hooked , but it is a part of a series, and hence I hoped to see Tracy , who is the lead character , grow with each book. However , she is pretty much the same in book two and three.


Though I prefer book three over book two ( the current one) , this by no means is an unsatisfactory read! Infact the series show how the Author is only getting better with each of the books . The intricate details of the crime , the character development and the way it all boils down to a fitting end is quite impressive.

Who do I recommend it to?

Crime fiction lovers – you need to read a Robert Dugoni already!

Quotable Quotes

When it comes to psychopaths, there is no medication. There is no treatment. There is no cure. There are only prisons.

The thing is, you can make all kinds of plans for your future and then stumble ass-backward into what you were meant to do.

It’s like anything you do; if you want to do it well, you have to work at it.

Gazala Amreen

Logophile, bibliophile, writer, designer, high on wanderlust and all things pretty.

Bangalore, KA merakipost.com