Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “A Necessary Evil (Maggie O'Dell #5)” as Want to Read:
A Necessary Evil (Maggie O'Dell #5)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

A Necessary Evil (Maggie O'Dell #5)

by
4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  4,979 ratings  ·  159 reviews
When a monsignor is found knifed to death in a Nebraska airport restroom, FBI special agent Maggie O'Dell is called in to profile the ritualistic murder of a priest, the latest in a series of killings. Maggie soon discovers a disturbing Internet game that's popular among victims of abuse by Catholic priests. With this first real lead in the investigation, she wonders if th ...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Mira (first published January 1st 2006)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Necessary Evil, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about A Necessary Evil

The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas HarrisDarkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff LindsayRed Dragon by Thomas HarrisAmerican Psycho by Bret Easton EllisThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
I Like Serial Killers
70th out of 615 books — 944 voters
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan DoyleAnd Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieMurder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieDeath on the Nile by Agatha ChristieOne for the Money by Janet Evanovich
Best Detective/Mystery Series
243rd out of 1,215 books — 1,497 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Elvan
Oh good grief. I might as well retire my less than shiny super sleuth badge after reading A Necessary Evil. I have to give her credit,
Kava dragged me around by the nose and I still didn't see the true killer until the last couple of pages.

After stopping and starting and not giving this book it's due until the 70% mark, I am glad I picked up the pace to enjoy the roller coaster ending. Good job on Kava's part responding to her fan requests to deal with the Father Keller storyline from book #1. I
...more
Bigd_041555
Well, what an adventure this book is. Fairly fast paced, twists turns, red herrings (Elvan's term), and surprises left, right and center!

Alex Kava is moving right up there in being a favourite!

I don't want to say a whole lot about this book for those of you that haven't read it yet - just, hurry up and read it. It is so worth it!

2 thumbs up and 5 stars for making me think and puzzle things out and look over my shoulder at times :)

Onto "Exposed" #6 in the Maggie O'Dell series!
Thomas Strömquist
A female FBI agent/profiler - a ritualistic serial killer of priests. Not a bad book by any means, but it has been done before. I did not find anything in this that lead me to follow Maggie O'Dell.
Adam
I admit, I struggled through this book. For me, the story jumped around too much, I never knew which character was talking at the onset of the chapters because all you were given was a date and time. Nothing clear about most of it and I was spending more time on figuring out who was talking then enjoying what was going on. All very distracting. Even the ending was "blah."
Marnie
This was the best book in the series, up to date.
It was fast paced and intriguing, always keeping you turning the pages.

A good ending to the story that started in A Perfect Evil.
I will suggest only reading this book if you've read the previous books in the series, otherwise you will be lost and end up giving bad reviews.
Yvonne
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kiera Healy
This is the first Alex Kava novel I've read. It quickly became apparent that this was a mistake, as the plot of this one revolves around the bad guy from a previous book in the series. Whoops. Luckily I wasn't blown away by A Necessary Evil, so I won't be cursing my luck over that.

In this thriller, FBI profiler Maggie O'Dell has two cases to deal with: women's heads are appearing near where she lives in Washington DC, while out in the Midwest, paedophile priests are being murdered. Sadly, I was
...more
Ioana
Ever since finishing all of Christie's novels 3 or 4 times over, I've been looking for more detective fiction to fill my mystery appetite. I haven't been able to stomach most American modern ones for the poor writing, profanity, and unnecessary violence and macho-ism. There's SOME of that in Alex Kava's work, but the plot was so riveting, the story so fast paced and intricate (connecting multiple story lines throughout), and the characters so believable and well developed that I didn't mind.

Aft
...more
Kim
Jun 22, 2014 Kim rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014, kindle
Another great book in the Maggie O'Dell series. Maggie is investigating a serial killer who appears to be killing women and priests and leaving their head to be discovered. Her friend Gwen seems to be distracted by something.
Lynda
A gripping opening introduction to the murder of Monsignor William O’Sullivan and his portfolio of secrets was just the beginning for this fast paced thriller. Special Agent Maggie O’Dell, Detective Julia Racine, Dr. Gwen Patterson, Nick Morrelli and others were connected to a case with a rising body count. A rush to stop the gruesome killings, unresolved past histories and confusing leads sent them on a twisted journey through several states.

Short chapters, quick pace, and intriguing clues add
...more
Janice
I realized after I got a little further into this book that I have read it before--surprise!!! I think I stopped reading the series because of the violence, but I do like the characters and the writing is pretty good. I think I am ready to go on to the next in the sries now. The plot in this book centers around murders of priests, sexual abuse by the priests, and young men playing very sophisticated video games.
Mark Goodwin
This was my first time with this author and I was very pleased. A serial killer of young boys who may be connected with the Catholic Church. I am surprised that the author didn't get booted out by the Vatican. A real page turner and keeps your attention right to the end ... and the end ... well, let's say it was a surprise !!
Carrie
I love the Alex Kava books and this one was great. Enjoyed the setting in Omaha and the moral delima at the end really gave me pause. I don't know how I would have handled it had I been in Maggie O'Dell's place.
Andrea
The author Alex Kava is from Omaha and I met her when I was working at Barnes and Noble in Omaha in 2003.

Haven't read her in quite a while, cleaning out books and reading some that have missed.

Monica Akinyi Odhiambo
Wow my goodness,this book just follows through like a movie.Had me engrossed in all that drama.This story reminds me of the Punisher.Someone killing Catholic priests to avenge for the way they tormented boys and girls while they pretended to carry out the work of God.Even surprising are the lengths that the Catholic church goes through to protect their priests when such allegations come through.At first the cases had no similarities but I loved the way Alex wove everything together.And in the en ...more
Katie
It wasn't very difficult to figure out who The Sin Eater really was, but that doesn't mean the ride to get there wasn't fun. I'm glad to see that the Father Keller loose end from the first novel was tied up, in an implied sort of way. I think the last few pages really gave us a good insight on Maggie's ethics.

Also, at this point I'm hoping she doesn't get together with Nick, because they are both desperately terrible at having adult conversions that involve real communication. It is so frustrat
...more
Brenda
This book had so much going on, it would have been easy to get lost, but I didn't luckily. This book brought to light a growing issue of priest, particularly Catholic priests, the molest children and go without punishment, they send all information to the Vatican, which has diplomatic immunity, therefore making it the perfect place to send evidence. This issue overshadows the murders of 4 women and their deaths become unimportant as the priests start getting killed, actually I should say 5 women ...more
Kris
3.5 STARS

"As the killing spree continues unabated, it becomes clear to Maggie O'Dell—the FBI profiler assigned to the case—that more than one perpetrator is responsible. As she begins to drill down into the facts, Maggie discovers a disturbing Internet role-playing game for youths who have been victims of male authority figures—including Catholic priests.

With the first real lead in the investigation, Maggie wonders if this group has turned cyberspace justice into reality by dispensing their own
...more
Lauren
A Necessary Evil by Alex Kava
Book #5 in the Maggie O’Dell series
4 Stars

Synopsis:
The one that got away...
FBI profiler, Maggie O'Dell is on the trail of two separate killers. One is leaving the decapitated heads of his victims all over the District and the other is killing priests in public. O’Dell has few leads when she receives an offer of assistance from a most unlikely source – her prime suspect in book one. Are these cases connected and will O’Dell accept the deal offered by a killer?

Review:
A
...more
Louise
I cannot do this book justice by writing my own comments so I am taking the liberty of using the write-up from the dust jacket.

"Someone is killing Catholic Priests in a cold, calculated manner. Is it a group of young boys whose internet game may have gone a step too far?

Detective Tommy Pakula is handed the case of his career when a Catholic monsignor is found knifed to death in an airport restroom. When Pakula learns that other priests have been murdered in other cities in the same ritualistic m
...more
Al

When a monsignor is found knifed to death in a Nebraska airport restroom, FBI special agent Maggie O'Dell is called in to profile the ritualistic murder of a priest, the latest in a series of killings. Maggie soon discovers a disturbing Internet game that's popular among victims of abuse by Catholic priests. With this first real lead in the investigation, she wonders if the group has turned cyberspace justice into reality. Then Maggie gets a second lead—one that leaves her stunned.

For the past

...more
Ana T.
As the killing spree continues unabated, it becomes clear to Maggie O'Dell—the FBI profiler assigned to the case—that more than one perpetrator is responsible. As she begins to drill down into the facts, Maggie discovers a disturbing Internet role-playing game for youths who have been victims of male authority figures—including Catholic priests.

With the first real lead in the investigation, Maggie wonders if this group has turned cyberspace justice into reality by dispensing their own brand of v
...more
Waven
This was my first Kava novel, and well into a series, so perhaps it was not the best place to make an introduction to the author. But it was a decent read with enough backstory on the main characters to flesh them out fairly well. Secondary characters didn't get much attention, but they didn't hold the story back, either (though I found one character's "quirk" disingenuous and annoying). I would give this 3.5 stars if possible but couldn't in good conscience give it 4. It's well written, moved a ...more
Patricia
First time reading this author and won't be the last! Stayed up really late two nights to finish this book, it had me at the start with a thrilling plot and characters I really liked. I had heard about the sin eater previously through a film I had seen and the author certainly did the character justice in her story. The surprise ending was not a surprise to me but although I had an inkling it left me doubting until the end....now I have to track down her previous books.....
Cupcakencorset
This, book 5 in the Maggie O'Dell series, was a terrific read! In this deliciously long read, the crime involves child-molesting priests who are being assassinated for the sex crimes they committed and got away with. Several women have also been murdered in the DC area, in what may be related crimes, including Maggie's best friend Gwen's receptionist. The story gets more complicated when the "real" bad guy from book 1 in the series (a priest who framed two others well enough to get away with a s ...more
Tom Tischler
Maggie O'Dell is an FBI profiler and as a killing spree suddenly happens she
believes that more than one perpratator is responsible. She also discovers
that a group of Internet role playing youths who have been molested by priests
may be responsible and they are dispensing their own kind of justice. Maggie
gets a second lead that leaves her stunned. For 4 years she has been trying to
find a Father Michael Keller, a human monster whose acts of depravity continue
to haunt her. Keller calls and offers
...more
Eadie
A Necessary Evil is a sequel to A Perfect Evil and is very fast-paced with lots of suspense and twists. Meeting up again with the evil Father Keller and Nick Morelli from the first book makes for an startling surprise ending. While Maggie is as vulnerable as she is strong, sparks continue to fly in her relationship with Nick. Looking forward to the next book to see what the future holds for Maggie and Nick.
Jan
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dylan Depoali
Originaly I read The Perfect Evil because I was bored in mexico and had nothing better to do. But about 50 pages into the book I realized it had a really good main character in special agent Maggie O'Dell.After I got home from my trip to Mexico I researched other books that Kava has written with the same character in it.


I came across A Necessary Evil and was hooked right away.
I liked how the author switched back and forth from character to character without giving anything away. She switched
...more
Susan
There were two separate story lines in this book, one set in Washington, DC and the other in Nebraska. I wasn't sure how they were going to intersect, but Alex Kava finally brought them together in a satisfying way. Like all her books, this one is a page-turner!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Last Known Victim (Stacy Killian, #3)
  • Slices of Night
  • Indelible (Grant County, #4)
  • A Thousand Suns
  • Blood Ties (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit, #12)
  • Acts of Mercy (Mercy Street #3)
  • Victim Six
  • Stripped (Jonathan Stride, #2)
  • Dead Secret (Diane Fallon Forensic Investigation, #3)
167395
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)
  • A Perfect Evil (Maggie O'Dell, #1)
  • Split Second (Maggie O'Dell, #2)
  • The Soul Catcher (Maggie O'Dell, #3)
  • At the Stroke of Madness (Maggie O'Dell, #4)
  • 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 Perfect Evil (Maggie O'Dell, #1) 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)

Share This Book