Violent gang members, dead bodies, dangerous relationships, dirty politics, luminol, assault rifles and a serial killer all feature in Blood Evidence, the second installment of Mel Odom’s NCIS trilogy.
Commander Will Coburn is the lead investigator into the kidnapping of a young girl which plunges Will’s specialist NCIS team into seventeen year old mystery of the murder of Commander Laura Ivers daughter and the contemporaneous disappearance of USMC Gunnery Sergeant George Haskins.
As the investigation unfolds, the team’s medical examiner Dr Nita Tomlinson is battling her own inner demons, questioning her commitment to marriage and motherhood as her inadequacies begin to overwhelm her. Seeking refuge in her work, Nita makes some poor choices that may destroy not only her family and career but her very soul.
Mel Odom has again excelled, writing a novel that is replete with action, intrigue and fabulous character development. The meticulous details of a forensic investigation including autopsy descriptions, criminal profiling and ballistics information is smoothly integrated into the story, providing great interest without becoming overwhelming. There is enough military jargon and explanations of modern weaponry to keep any man enthralled and the relational threads, from Will’s struggles as a single parent to Nita’s marital issues, are just as expertly handled and will resonate with both male and female readers.
Mel’s story held me captivate for the entire 435 pages and I eagerly anticipate the final instalment in this absorbing series to interact more with Will, Shel, Estrella, Remy, Maggie and Nita.