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A Perfect Evil (Maggie O'Dell, #1)
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A Perfect Evil (Maggie O'Dell #1)

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  11,082 ratings  ·  394 reviews
The brutal murders of three young boys paralyze the citizens of Platte City, Nebraska. What's worse is the grim realization that the man recently executed for the crimes was a copycat. When Sheriff Nick Morrelli is called to the scene of another grisly murder, it becomes clear that the real predator is still at large, waiting to kill again.Morrelli understands the urgency ...more
Paperback, 475 pages
Published August 1st 2008 by Mira Books (first published June 17th 2000)
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I discovered Alex Kava back in 2007 when my husband bought it randomly as a birthday gift. I was always into mystery and suspense novels so I knew I would probably like it, but I had no idea I was going to love it this much.

Maggie is an FBI agent - a profiler - who's on the hunt for a serial killer. It sounds like your average murder mystery I know, but no it's really awesome! This is the first book in the Maggie O'Dell series, but it doesn't read like one. The writing is great and the characte
When I discovered I had won book 8 in this series in a Goodreads drawing, my usual inability to read a series kicked in... especially when I realized I had, in fact, already read book 3 in 2006. Yes, by itself and out of order! I don't know how I did it, or why, but I decided to rectify the situation. Thus, I acquired the entire series (except, strangely, book 3) and started at the beginning. And what a beginning!

Kava's series features Maggie O'Dell, an 8-year veteran of the FBI when A Perfect E
Absolutely, truly enjoyed this book. Captivating, twists and twisted, difficult subject matter, very well written, really likeable characters, and a cliff hanger to boot!

Alex Kava knows how to write a book and keep your attention - the killer wasn't always that obvious, she makes you think and second guess yourself - love it!

A bit of romance, just enough and not over done - like that about this book. I don't need graphic sex in my reading - that is what your imagination is for if it is that much
I love a book that keeps me up late reading and gets me out of bed early to grab just a few more pages before I start my day. Kava has done a stellar job building characters and settings and her Maggie O'Dell is my kind of strong if tortured protagonist.

I liked the fast pace of this thriller. If the sign of a great book is that you feel like you are scrambling along a cold muddy river bank running and hiding for your life along side the victims and hunters then this is a great book. There are th
Karyn Niedert
I finished reading Alex Kava's new book, "Breaking Creed" last week and was immediately taken with character Maggie O'Dell. Super-excited to discover a new series that I haven't read yet, just enjoyed "A Perfect Evil", the first in Kava's Maggie O'Dell series.

The book was okay, but I knew who was culpable for the heinous murder of the little boys by chapter 4 or 5. By the final chapters, things were pretty convoluted and bad guy gets away-cue the music for a follow-up book featuring this dasta
"A perfect Evil" started out really good but tetered out pretty fast. Overall it was okay, but it's still nowhere near a very good thriller.

The story is pretty predictable --- even though there are several suspects thrown in throughout the story I daresay that anyone with half a brain will know after just a few chapters who the killer is.

The characters are okay (nothing special, though). One thing that I found kinda strange is that even though the book is called "A Perfect Evil - A Maggie O'Dell
This books was truly terrible. I wanted to quit by the 10th chapter, but I usually finish a book once it's started. In this case it's a decision I deeply regret. Time in my life that I could have spent reading something good, is now gone forever.

None of the characters are at all likable and they are all downright stupid. The author had cops destroying evidence and bumbling around like fools. She somehow even made the poor little 10 year old victims stupid. Two children have been kidnapped and ki
D.B. Reynolds
The first book in the Maggie O'Dell series of romantic suspense ... although there really isn't much romance. I've read the first four books in the series, and so far Maggie has met, been attracted to, and deflected at least two very handsome and charming men. I like these books because the suspense is quite well done, and the mysteries are intriguing. Maggie's self-destructive behavior in the first three books was less attractive, but, aside from her serious issues with personal relationships, ...more
Michelle Maas
Ugh, I quit at page 127. By then Kava has given away the murderer's identity, his motive, his next victim, the love interest. The next 200 pages would reveal how the good guys finally (if ever) catch the bad guy, along with, I assume, more detailed descriptions of child sexual assault, misogynist torture, bludgeonings, drugging, strangling, stabbings, desecrations of corpses. Not my idea of a relaxing summer night's read. I wanted to read it because it was a writer setting her action in Nebraska ...more
Dec 27, 2013 Muthulakshmi rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nobody
Recommended to Muthulakshmi by: Nobody
I finished 5 chapters. Then I said profane things for a while because I am disappointed that yet another book with good reviews, turned out to be such a cop out. Where do I even begin?

Oh yes, the beginning. There we are, getting introduced to a man who raped and killed a little boy and is about to be put to death. Kids, do you know what time it is??

It is confession to Jesus time!!

Dialogue(he strangled the boy): "I waited until he was dead before I cut him. He didn't feel a thing"

Dead people
on the one hand, this book had kept me on the edge of my seat while reading it. and O'delle was great- with her fears, her problems, her past and her professionalism.

then, what's the problem? i didn't take me long to realize who the murderer is. and i took me a long time to finish that book. it was(!) a good book, but at some point i felt like the end wasn't going to come. because it dragged.

i'll be the first to admit, when deciding whether i love a book or not it is a question of:
1. the char
Black Butterfly
Apr 10, 2013 Black Butterfly rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ADULTS
Recommended to Black Butterfly by: AMAZON
The North Wall
It's hard to know where to start with this one. I thought I was on the verge of kicking off a new, smart female-centric series that I could get my teeth into. What I ended up with was a sub-par, not very thrilling thriller with a ridiculous Mills & Boon-esque romance simmering, panting, and almost but never quite cavorting in the background.

I was surprised to find alleged series lead Maggie O'Dell relegated to one of many POVs, with the bulk of the initial plot being driven by blander-than-
Wow I loved this book. I am now a die hard Alex Kava fan after only reading the first in the Maggie O'Dell series.
Convicted killer Ronald Jeffreys is executed for the murder and desecration of three little boys. He wholeheartedly admits his guilt to one of the three, but goes to his grave professing his innocence for the other two murders. In three short months after the execution, another body of a young boy is found killed in a similar manner. Small town sheriff Nick Morrelli realizes he’s in over his head and lacks the resources to deal with an investigation of such a scale. He enlists the help of Maggie ...more
(3.5 stars). I thought it was a bit long. I thought that the character of Nick was written as incompetent. And as though he didn't have a clue how to do his job. I realize that this is a small town with only minor crimes. It's just that I really liked the character and wanted him to be portrayed as though he, at least, had an idea of how to do his job. The investigation was written in a sloppy way. Kind of all over the place. It didn't seem like they followed the clues or one clue led to another ...more
Gina Barlean
Over all a decent book. Not the stellar writing I was expecting, but I did like the characters and plot line. I liked the ending.
I'm not a fan of books that jump around with sub-plots. I'm sure I'm not the norm regarding that opinion, though. It seemed to drag on. I would have like it to get to the point quicker...probably because I knew who the killer was so early. I kept wondering if there would be a surprise ending and the Ray line kind of led me that direction.
I liked Nick as the flawed ma
Narrated by Richard Rowan

10 hrs and 45 mins

Some of the story felt like a Harlequin romance book. It was ok, but the writing was disappointing.

Publisher's Summary

The brutal murders of three young boys paralyze the citizens of Platte City, Nebraska. What's worse is the grim realization that the man recently executed for the crimes was a copycat. When Sheriff Nick Morrelli is called to the scene of another grisly murder, it becomes clear that the real predator is still at large, waiting to kill aga
Een Alex Kava-thriller, het woordje thriller had meteen mijn aandacht! Het genre waar ik zo hard van kan genieten. Vol overgave stortte ik mij dan ook op de beginpagina's. Reuze-spannend, tot op een bepaalde bladzijde waar ze letterlijk weggeven wie de dader is en je gewoon verder leest omdat je meer te weten wil komen over de relatie tussen bepaalde personages (maar ook daar ligt het er dik bovenop hoe het gaat verlopen!!) . Teleurgesteld blijf je toch doorlezen, omdat je het motief wil kennen ...more
This was an interesting, although cliche book. As the first book in a series I can give it the benefit of the doubt that Alex Kava is just honing her craft and there are bound to be some things that will be improved upon during the run of the series.

Her heroine is a jaded FBI agent with 8 years of experience and a chip on her shoulder from the last case she worked on. She stumbles onto a case in Nebraska dealing with small town mentalities, the church, and little boys being kidnapped. This nove
Dwayne Keller
Good story; took me longer to read than it should have; but enjoyable all the same. The basic story is somebody is kidnapping, sodomizing, and killing little boys. Maggie O'Dell is called in to profile the killer. Along the way you learn about her worthless self-centerd husband, and her mother. You disover some history on her last case that causes her nightmares. There is the day today involvement of the small town, nosey reports and such; you find out a previous murderer may have been credited ...more
Laura Pilcher
Another late night.....don't start this book unless you have 4 hours to read it all in one go!

A small town breathes a sigh of relief after a murderer of three little boys is executed. That sigh doesn't last long when another body turns up. The Sheriff is in over his head and asks for assistance from the FBI in the "Page 3" form of Maggie O'Dell. A talk no nonsense FBI agent who has horrors in her recent past she is still trying to deal with. A Town in Shock, A Murderer on a Mission, A fight ag
This is the first book in Alex Kava’s Maggie O’Dell series. I was introduced to Kava’s books through one of my book clubs and not only enjoyed her writing style, but also the creepy excitement that she brought to the story. A Perfect Evil was no different, and being the first book in the series, Kava told more about Maggie’s background as she profiled the suspect in murders of young boys in Nebraska. The character development was very well done, the story and mystery is laid out well, and finall ...more
I bought this book when it first came out over a decade ago, and left it at my grandmother's house. I picked it up again when I was there this summer and, remembering how much I loved it, decided to re-read it -- particularly since I noticed that there are now 8 books in the series. It didn't grab me nearly the same way this time. Perhaps it's because I remembered the ending from the very start of the book, and because I realized that the writing wasn't particularly good. There were a lot of cli ...more
Love, love, loved it. I found this book very Koontz-like before Koontz took a weird turn in his writing. The character developement throughout was fantastic, and the plot was suspenseful. Once I started, I found it hard to put down. Maggie O'dell's character is very relatable to all women that are trying to be taken seriously in a very male dominated career. I loved that her character, although slightly broken herself, tries to get into the minds of some very disturbed predators. I am actually a ...more
Jeff Dickison
This could have been a good book, but two things killed it. First it was full of romantic B.S. I felt the ghost of Tami Hoag hovering over every page. Too many electric shocks when their fingers touched, too much gazing into beautiful eyes, too many rippling sinews. Barf! Secondly their was no ending. The bad guy, who every reader in America knew by 1/4 of the book, got away to be continued later. Double barf! That being said there was a good plot buried beneath all this stuff. It's too bad Kava ...more
Caty Hespel
Mijn allereerste kennismaking met Alex Kava en wat voor één!
Zeer sterk verhaal en superspannend.
Hoewel ik halfweg het idee had van, nu ken ik de dader en wat gaat ze nu nog vertellen in de volgende 200 bladzijden, moet ik toegeven dat door de verschillende invalshoeken en wendingen ik tot 10 bladzijden van het eind nog altijd twijfelde of ik nu wel juist zat.
Zowel de seksuele spanning tussen beide hoofdpersonages als het plots opduikend gevaar aan het einde van het boek, heeft me bovendien aange
Sono dell'idea che in un thriller il lettore voglia immedesimarsi - in un certo senso - nel detective e riuscire a ricostruire l'identità del killer con gli indizi che vengono raccolti.. Quindi già quando ogni tot capitoli viene narrato il POV dell'assassino mi innervosisce.. Però quando l'assassino è palese e manifesto già a pagina venti mi si smonta l'entusiasmo :(
Per carità, ho apprezzato moltissimo l'agente O'Dell (su cui per altro è incentrata la serie dell'autrice.. E io che pensavo fosse
This book was recommended and gifted to me by a friend. Without reading the book synopsis first – something I usually don’t do anyway – I delved right in and instantly got absorbed in a world where little boys are abducted and murdered as a means to be saved. It sounds bizarre, but from the killer’s point of view it made perfect sense.

This is the very first book I’ve read by Alex Kava, but definitely won’t be the last. It has all the elements readers of suspense novels would hope for, including
BEWARE: One man's book jacket summary is another man's spoiler.

“A Perfect Evil” deserves 2 or 3 stars, in my rating system.

Central character is Maggie O’Dell, a 30something FBI profiler who’s sent to Nebraska to help on a case of a young boy abducted, theb murdered in ritual fashion.

The plot is complex. A series of old murders loops with several new murders – all involving young boys in families headed by a single mom. There’s a real murderer, and several blinds (nay, double-blinds) who serve as
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Who do you like more? 14 82 Jan 26, 2015 08:48PM  
USA Geography Cha...: A Perfect Evil by Alex Kava 1 3 Dec 29, 2014 06:17AM  
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Alex Kava is the New York Times bestselling author of thirteen novels, eleven of them in the critically acclaimed Maggie O’Dell series. Her stand-alone novel, One False Move, was chosen for the 2006 One Book One Nebraska and her political thriller, Whitewash, made January Magazine’s best thriller of the year list for 2007. Published in over twenty-five countries, Kava’s novels have made the bestse ...more
More about Alex Kava...

Other Books in the Series

Maggie O'Dell (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Split Second (Maggie O'Dell, #2)
  • The Soul Catcher (Maggie O'Dell, #3)
  • At the Stroke of Madness (Maggie O'Dell, #4)
  • A Necessary Evil (Maggie O'Dell #5)
  • Exposed (Maggie O'Dell, #6)
  • Black Friday (Maggie O'Dell, #7)
  • Damaged (Maggie O'Dell, #8)
  • Hotwire (Maggie O'Dell, #9)
  • Slices of Night
  • Fireproof (Maggie O'Dell, #10)
A Necessary Evil (Maggie O'Dell #5) Split Second (Maggie O'Dell, #2) The Soul Catcher (Maggie O'Dell, #3) Exposed (Maggie O'Dell, #6) At the Stroke of Madness (Maggie O'Dell, #4)

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