On, Off I loved The Thorn Birds and some of Colleen McCullough's Roman epics, so I was eager to pick up her latest, a serial-killer thriller set… On, Off I loved The Thorn Birds and some of Colleen McCullough's Roman epics, so I was eager to pick up her latest, a serial-killer thriller set… 2006-05-23 Fiction Mystery and Thriller Simon & Schuster
Book Review

On, Off (2006)

EW's GRADE
B-

Details Release Date: May 23, 2006; Writer: Colleen Mccullough; Genres: Fiction, Mystery and Thriller; Publisher: Simon & Schuster

I loved The Thorn Birds and some of Colleen McCullough's Roman epics, so I was eager to pick up her latest, a serial-killer thriller set at a very Yale-like Ivy League college in Holloman, Conn. When the first body part is found in a university lab's refrigerator, Lieut. Carmine Delmonico is put on the case. Despite his careful casework, the killer eludes him, leaving behind so few clues that Delmonico begins to think of him as ''the Ghost.'' Yet for all McCullough's skills — savvy plotting, great dialogue — On, Off just doesn't ring true, and that's because Delmonico is too familiar, even bland, to work as the main character. There's no question: McCullough can write. But maybe she should stick to historical fiction.

Originally posted May 19, 2006 Published in issue #878 May 26, 2006 Order article reprints
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