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DOUBLE VISION by Colby Marshall: Book Review

Dr. Jenna Ramey is a forensic psychiatrist with the FBI.  She brings years of experience to her job, but she also brings something that no other agent/profiler can match–she has synesthesia, a neurological condition causing her to visualize various colors that she has learned correspond to what people are saying or how they are behaving.

A shooting is taking place in a grocery store filled with senior citizens.  But the caller to the 911 emergency line is a six-year-old girl who came to the store with her grandmother.  Young Molly Keegan is almost unbelievably calm when talking to the emergency dispatcher Yancy Vogul, but everything she tells him can be verified.  She has counted the seven shots and, sure enough, there are seven victims dead when the police and FBI agents arrive on the scene.

Yancy, Jenna’s significant other, is still recovering from the accident that left him with a prosthetic leg.  Unable to work as a field agent for the Bureau, he now is behind the desk of the local police station, grateful that he still has some connection to law enforcement but despondent about not having the career he wanted.  So, although he knows better, he’s become emotionally invested in CiCi Winthrop, a woman who has called 911 several times about her abusive husband but has refused to press charges.  So now Yancy is just going a little out of his way, he tells himself, “just to check.”  What harm could it do?

After a second interview with Molly, Jenna and her colleagues become fearful that the man they are looking for is the serial murderer they are calling the Triple Shooter.  As Jenna tells the other agents, “This isn’t a random shooter.  We’ve seen him before.”  There are differences between this shooting and the previous ones, but Jenna still believes the UNSUB (unknown subject) has committed the previous murders.  He has killed women only before, and this mass shooting included both sexes.  But there’s something about all the crimes that connect them in Jenna’s mind, although she’s not sure what that is.

There are significant pieces in Jenna’s backstory.  Her mother, Claudia, is a serial killer who has escaped from a mental hospital, and no one knows her whereabouts now.  And Jenna’s daughter’s father, Hank, was murdered a year ago, and some members are contesting the will in which he named Ayana in both his insurance policies; Hank’s mother, in particular, is demanding proof that Ayana is actually her granddaughter.

Is Jenna’s condition a neurological aberration or a gift, an additional hidden sense?  Sometimes it seems to Jenna that it’s both, helping her when she’s working a crime scene or interviewing witnesses, interfering with her work when the colors she visualizes don’t seem to make sense.  But overall she confident that synesthesia works well for her, a “sixth sense” that can help her tell truth from fiction.

Color Blind is the second novel in the series featuring Dr. Jenna Ramey.  I’m looking forward to the third one.

You can read more about Colby Marshall at this web site.

Check out the complete Marilyn’s Mystery Reads at her web site.








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