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Last edited: 19/06/2021
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Mary Willis Walker
Under The Beetles Cellar
367 pages
Intrepid, wisecracking crime reporter Molly Cates is back, this time confronting wacko cult leader Samuel Mordecai, whose Austin, Texas, compound is just as bound-for-tragedy as David Koresh's. Mordecai believes the end of the world is imminent, and according to a divine vision he's received, he must sacrifice a group of purified "lambs of God" who'll serve as his ticket into Heaven. To that end, he's kidnapped a school bus driver and 11 children and kept them hostage in a buried bus for 46 days. The hostage negotiators can't make headway, and they're terrified of another disaster of Waco proportions. Enter Molly, who interviewed Mordecai months earlier and is the only person he will trust. The story moves from the gut-wrenching tension inside the hostage bus to the frustrated negotiators to Molly, who's racing against time to psych Mordecai out and rescue the children before their captor begins his final sacrifice.

Bit of a slow start, but geys rather good agyer the first half.

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