The Last Temptation by Val McDermid

‘The Last Temptation’ is the 3rd novel by Val McDermid featuring DI Carol Jordan and Dr Tony Hill and is set two years after the previous novel- ‘The Wire in the Blood’.

Over the previous two years, Tony has left criminal profiling and is now working at a University in Scotland while Carol continues to move on in her career. They rarely see each other.

Then Carol takes on a dangerous undercover assignment in Germany. Her uncanny resemblance to Katerina Basler, the recently deceased girlfriend of Tadeuz Radecki, makes her the ideal person to penetrate his defences – even with her relative inexperience in undercover work. Radecki runs an empire of drug and people smuggling and the authorities are desperate to shut him down and see him prosecuted.

Carol’s handler, Petra Becker, is also working on the case of a potential serial killer. Carol realises that this would be the perfect case to bring Tony back into the world of criminal profiling. Someone is murdering experimental psychologists in an extremely gruesome manner.

So Carol and Tony find themselves living in the same apartment complex in Germany and once again exploring their feelings for each other while involved in extremely demanding and potentially dangerous cases.

Carol spends her time charming Radecki while tempting him to join forces in business. But she has no idea how much of a monster the good looking and charismatic Radecki really is. And she has no idea what price she will pay if things go wrong.

Meanwhile, Tony finds himself digging into Germany’s dark Nazi past in order to identify a serial killer and find out what has made him the way that he is.

The novel contained two excellent plots each of which would probably have been enough on their own.

I enjoyed the ongoing character development of Carol and Tony and also enjoyed the newly introduced characters of Petra Becker and Marijke van Hasselt.

This book mentions developments in the Jacko Vance case. I expect that this will be developed further in future novels in the series.

I’m not sure how Carol and Tony will recover from the events of this novel. I look forward to finding out more in the next in the series – ‘The Torment of Others’.


Book Published 2002


See a full list of books by Val McDermid

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