By Tina Jordan
Updated November 24, 2006 at 05:00 AM EST

Complexity in thrillers is usually a good thing. Greg Iles’ True Evil begins in promising enough fashion, but Iles sends his story ricocheting in a dizzying manner, piling on unnecessary subplots along the way. If that isn’t bad enough, the characters are right out of Thriller 101: There’s the scarred FBI agent, the ruthless blond wife (wouldn’t it be nice to have a cunning brunette for a change?), the evil fat man, the endangered child (actually, two). And one of the final setups is so contrived that it simply falls apart on the page. As a fan of Iles’ previous work, I hope he takes more time — and care — with his next book.