The Bride Collector


FBI Special Agent Brad Raines is facing his toughest case yet. A Denver serial killer has killed four beautiful young women, leaving a bridal veil at each crime scene, and he’s picking up his pace. Unable to crack the case, Raines appeals for help from a most unusual source: residents of the Center for Wellness and Intelligence, a private psychiatric institution for mentally ill individuals whose are extraordinarily gifted.

It’s there that he meets Paradise, a young woman who witnessed her father murder her family and barely escaped his hand. Diagnosed with schizophrenia, Paradise may also have an extrasensory gift: the ability to experience the final moments of a person’s life when she touches the dead body.

In a desperate attempt to find the killer, Raines enlists Paradise’s help. In an effort to win her trust, he befriends this strange young woman and begins to see in her qualities that most ‘sane people’ sorely lack. Gradually, he starts to question whether sanity resides outside the hospital walls…or inside.

As the Bride Collector picks up the pace-and volume-of his gruesome crucifixions, the case becomes even more personal to Raines when his friend and colleague, a beautiful young forensic psychologist, becomes the Bride Collector’s next target.

The FBI believes that the killer plans to murder seven women. Can Paradise help before it’s too late?

The Phoenix’s Perspective

I have to say I was nervous when I chose The Bride Collector.  I have always enjoyed Ted Dekker – his writing is incredible and his stories always take turns I hadn’t envisioned, but the last 9 books I have read have all been Teen Fiction.  To go from Teen Fiction to Ted Dekker is a big leap.  As usual, Ted Dekker did not disappoint.  The Bride Collector was full of twists and turns – some I could see coming and some just blind-sighted me leaving me speechless.

The plot centers around a serial killer, dubbed the Bride Collector, who kills women by drilling holes in their heels, draining their blood and then hanging them up with bridal veils.  Clearly he is suffering from some sort of mental instability.  FBI Special Agent Brad Raines figures when in Rome — it might take a psycho to catch a psycho.  He turns to some patients at a private center for mental illness for help in cracking the case.  What he comes to learn is that mental illness is simply one aspect of these patients and that the world has been underestimating what they can really do.

The story in itself was interesting and Dekker found a way to always keep it moving forward and thus keeping the reader involved.  However, I didn’t think that the story itself was the most interesting part.  Dekker focused on the line between sanity and insanity.  Through the interactions of these patients and Special Agent Raines, the reader begins to see that the borderline of sanity is really thin.  It was fascinating to see how Raines could relate to the patients and to watch him question what he has always taken for granted as “sane” before.  We do not all live on one side all the time.  Truth be told, we might jump the border more often than we think.

Would I add it to the library?

Yes.  I could never pass up the chance to read (or reread) a Ted Dekker novel.  I definitely recommend reading something by him at least once.  It will probably change the way you look at some things.


Genre: Fiction – Thriller
ISBN: 9781599953724
Rating:  good


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