Dark Pattern, The Naturalist, Book 4 by Andrew Mayne

Dr. Theo Cray is back… and this one is just as good as the first three books. The reader can see how Theo’s past cases are affecting him: the survivor’s guilt, the distance he’s created from his girlfriend, Jillian, and most importantly, the possibility that he has contracted the Hyde virus. Yet, when a woman comes to him with evidence that a nurse may be killing patients, he finds that drive to use his detective skills once again.

It starts in a small hospital in Baton Rouge. A group of families has zeroed in on a nurse they think might have had the opportunity to murder several young children. Theo runs into new obstacles in passive administrators, local politics, patient confidentiality, and a ‘virus’ that has conveniently erased records. He crosses the line once again and gains access to CDC data and uses his computation skills to assess the statistical points… Theo knows that the death rates are far above normal.

Spurned on by his mentor, Cray crosses the country and international lines to hunt the killer. And Mayne adds a new wrinkle to this book: a good amount of legal wrangling. I really liked this part of the book. It reins him in a bit and makes him more cautious… but nothing that would ever stop him.

I read this in less than 24 hours. Each of these books is a perfect *weekend read*. Fast-paced with mind-bending science and a good bit of human interest in an interesting character. I will say that there are many more references to Theo’s old cases in this one than any of the other books, so I would say that it’s important to read the first three to really enjoy all the details in Dark Pattern. But read away and enjoy!

5 out of 5 stars

Thank you to NetGalley, Amazon Publishing, and the author for an advanced copy of the book.

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