Mister X - John Lutz Quinn has more or less retired from the police department and is now running his own detective agency. He is approached by Chrissie who claims to have won a considerable sum of money and wants to hire his agency to find the killer, know as the “Carver,” of her twin sister, Tiffany. Quinn is then hired by the police department as consultants on the case which has been reopened after the discovery of another murdered women whose M.O. resembles that of the Carver. (I won’t describe exactly what the similarity might be other than to suggest it has to do with nipples.)

We also follow the history of Jerry, a rather troubled young man who would get satisfaction from watching Tiffany and Chrissie’s father abuse Tiffany as a young child and then beat her twin sister. Lovely.

The plot thickens as we learn that the woman claiming to be Chrissie is someone else and the investigators are being shadowed by yet another woman they can’t identify, but who seems always to show up at murder scenes. Then pseudo-Chrissie disappears, and Pearl, Quinn’s erstwhile squeeze has taken up with Yancy whom her mother regards as a reptile given what she has heard about him in the Ladies Circle. Suspicions, anyone?

Some interesting plot twists and blind alleys. I didn’t find it as “heart-stopping” as others have (they must have weak hearts, indeed,) but it was well-written with interesting characters and good detecting.