The Women's Murder Club pits four San Francisco women professionals against a serial killer who's stalking and murdering newlyweds in bestselling author James Patterson's newest thriller. Lindsay Boxer is a homicide inspector who's just gotten some very bad news. She deals with it by immersing herself in her newest case and soliciting the personal as well as professional support of her closest friend, who happens to be the city's medical examiner. The two women, along with an ambitious and sympathetic reporter and an assistant DA, form an unlikely alliance, pooling their information and bypassing the chain of command in an engaging, suspenseful story whose gruesome setup is vintage Patterson.
"What is the worst thing anyone has ever done?" the killer muses to himself early in the narrative. "Am I capable of doing it? Do I have what it takes?" Answering his own question, he embarks on a murderous spree that takes him from the bridal suite in a Nob Hill hotel to a honeymoon destination in the Napa Valley and thence to a wedding reception at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. Dispatching his victims on the happiest day of their lives, he purposefully leaves enough clues for his distaff trackers to discover his identity and put him behind bars. But just when the women think they've got the case all wrapped up, the killer turns the tables on them in a bloody denouement that even the most discerning reader won't see coming. Patterson, author of the popular Alex Cross mysteries, promises future adventures for the Women's Murder Club, which may give him an opportunity to develop his heroines' characters more completely and win new fans among those who prefer their detectives in high heels and lipstick.
2nd Chance reconvenes the Women's Murder Club, four friends (a detective, a reporter, an assistant district attorney, and a medical examiner) who used their networking skills, feminine intuition, and professional wiles to solve a baffling series of murders in 1st to Die. This time, the murders of two African Americans, a little girl and an old woman, bear all the signs of a serial killer for Lindsay Boxer, newly promoted to lieutenant of San Francisco's homicide squad. But there's an odd detail she finds even more disturbing: both victims were related to city cops. A symbol glimpsed at both murder scenes leads to a racist hate group, but the taunting killer strikes again and again, leaving deliberate clues and eluding the police ever more cleverly. In the meantime, each of the women has a personal stake at risk--and the killer knows who they are.
2nd Chance speeds along at a Formula One pace through many tight curves, but unlike recent entries in the Alex Cross series, it doesn't sacrifice good characters to a twisted plot. Lindsay's the star, but there's a fine esprit de corps among the four women, who are even better developed here than in the first book. What makes them both convincing and interesting as a criminal-justice juggernaut is their willingness to stick their necks out, even if they suffer for it. If you haven't picked up a James Patterson novel in a while, this is a great time to start anew.
From the start, Patterson's Women's Murder Club series (1st to Die; Second Chance) has felt like high-concept TV with a smart edge, featuring an appealing and reliable cast of four female crime busters (a cop, a prosecutor, a medical examiner, a reporter) who race along byzantine plot lines humming with blood and sex, romance and heartbreak. But Patterson is an author who will detonate readers' presumptions for the sake of story, and in the series' third installment, the prolific author, working with frequent collaborator Gross (The Jester, etc.), defies expectations in a shocking way. Readers will love him for it. San Francisco Homicide lieutenant Lindsay Boxer, who narrates most of the action, is jogging with assistant DA Jill Barnhardt when Lindsay notices two things: first, bruises on Jill's shoulder; then the explosion of a nearby townhouse, into which Lindsay rushes to save a child. With the juxtaposition of these two plotlines, Patterson jumpstarts this enjoyably convoluted tale. The townhouse, home to a greedy CEO and his family, was destroyed by members of a terrorist group calling itself "August Spies"; Lindsay's chase after the group, which commits further killings, brings her into close proximity to what promises to be a new series regular, Joe Molinari, deputy director of the Office of Homeland Security. Love blooms for Lindsay but, meanwhile, love has curdled at Jill's house, where Jill's husband is abusing her. Then comes the big surprise, and the story's remainder plays out at high emotion and warp speed. There's a calculated feel to all that happens, but clever manipulation of an audience serves Patterson as well as it served Hitchcock: his fans will only clamor for more.
Lieutenant Lindsay Boxer is involved in a shooting that causes her to be charged with police brutality. Relieved of duty while awaiting trial, Lindsay travels to Half Moon Bay, only to find this community experiencing a rash of murders. With Yuki Castellano fighting for Lindsay in the courtroom and the murders in Half Moon Bay escalating, the Women's Murder Club cranks into full form. Carolyn McCormick drives this fast-paced, high-powered novel right off the printed page into real experience. A whining, pleading injured teen driving with only a learner's permit is so skillfully presented that danger is ignored; a spinal-cord-injured witness whose sobs are interrupted by the sucking of ventilator-initiated breathing is believable even while demonstrating courtroom theatrics.
Three longtime friends are dismayed to discover that a fourth friend, author of a self-help book, has used them as examples of how women let fear prevent them from achieving happiness. They make a pact to face their biggest fears, and Maddy takes the plunge. Her husband's cancer forced her to put her dream of becoming an artist on hold, but now that she is widowed, she accepts an invitation to be the arts-and-crafts director of a summer camp in New Mexico. The director is her old flame from high school who she dumped when he proposed. Joe has never forgiven her, but one look at her wild red hair and funky clothes, and he is smitten all over again. Maddy and Joe have sexy fun, but trying to achieve emotional intimacy is as easy as walking across a field of land mines. How do they get over their past and create a future? Find out in comedic romance writer Ortolon's funny and compelling story of two unforgettable characters.
Australian novelist McInerney's American debut centers on three estranged sisters who come home to Clare Valley, Australia, for their grandmother's eightieth birthday. Anna, Bett, and Carrie Quinlan haven't spoken in three years, since Bett's fiance jilted her for Carrie and Anna's attempts to mediate failed miserably. Their grandmother Lola still has fond memories of when the girls sang together in their youth as the Alphabet Sisters, so she devises a plot to get the girls to stay: she's written a musical she wants them to produce with the help of the denizens of Clare Valley. Though outwardly reluctant, each sister has a reason for wanting to stay. Anna's marriage to Glenn is failing, and her young daughter, Ellen, is recovering from a dog attack, from which she still bears the scars. Bett has quit her job in London and is considering a new start in Clare Valley. And Carrie's marriage to Michael might be in trouble. This warm, involving novel about the depth of the bond between sisters will likely be popular with book groups.
An activist attorney is killed in a cut little L.A. trolley called Angels Flight, far from Harry Bosch's Hollywood turf. But the case is so explosive - and the dead man's enemies inside the LAPD are so numerous - that it falls to Harry to solve it. Now the streets are superheating. Harry's year-old Vegas marriage is unraveling. And the hunt for a killer is leading Harry to another high-profile LA murder case, one where every cop had a motive. The question is, did any have the guts?
Jake Langston wasn't a man to go looking for trouble, though if it found him he'd settle it--with a gun or a soft threat. But the night beautiful Banner Coleman forced his hand, he was lost...
Torn by secrets he'd never shared, Jake Langston had grown to bitter manhood on the wagon train west to Texas. Baptized by the senseless murder of his brother, introduced to passion in the arms of a woman incapable of love, Jake wanted no part of the seductive purity of the spirited daughter of his best friends Ross and Lydia. But on a night when her dearest illusions about love had been shattered, Banner Coleman went in search of the one man who could never refuse her anything. Shame warred with desire--and lost...
In the cold light of morning their guilt stilled their raging passions, and they turned from one another in sorrow and remorse. But when their enemies joined in a plot of jealousy and revenge that threatened all they held dear, they were forced to confront the demons of a shadowy past. Only then would they be free to face the new day, a future limited only by their dreams...and their love for each other...
Nina used to be the perfect corporate executive's wife, but after 15 years she realized that she wasn't happy, got divorced and began to finally live her own life. Alex is her downstairs neighbor, an emergency room doctor, and a serial dater. However, once he meets her, his life plans change and he sets out trying to find a way to convince her that she belongs in his life. Add to this mix Alex' brother Max (a gynecologist), Nina's friend Charity (who's about to write a book on her 12-man string of failed romances), and Fred (a part manic-depressive stray dog who's got a severe Oreo jones) and there are more than enough opportunities for the humorous scenes that Ms. Crusie does so well.
Nina and Alex are obviously a couple who are meant for each other, but before true love can triumph each must overcome their own personal obstacles - Nina's problem with dating someone so much younger, and Alex' family pressures and mistaken goals. But the story doesn't bog down with angst, and everything is leavened with humor. And, I was especially glad to see Nina's 40 year old self taking center stage, rather than being relegated to being a secondary character. It's so refreshing to read a romance that doesn't contain a dewy twenty-something . This is a fun book, and it's worth searching out and buying.
Anna and her friends decide to blow off the senior class trip to D.C., and head to Vegas for a glamorous 3-day vacation. They check into the ultra-luxe Palms Hotel and the wildness begins before they have a chance to unpack their Tuff Betty carpetbags. The girls have a tacky Vegas fashion contest, and Cammie pulls a stunt that's outrageous even by Cammie standards. Then everyone visits a hypnotist to the stars. While they are spellbound, the gang reveals their deepest, darkest secrets and learns firsthand why Vegas is called Sin City!
Koontz soars beyond the limits of Midnight and his other bestsellers. The principal characters, married detectives Julie and Bobby Dakota, agree to help frightened amnesiac Frank Pollard figure out what he does when he's asleep. (Not only can Frank not remember his past, but he wakes up mornings to find mysterious bags of large-denomination bills by his bed.) In due course, Frank and the Dakotas join forces against murderer Candy Pollard and his weird sisters, who want to kill Frank--evidently the sole human in the monstrous family. Candy extends psychic feelers toward potential victims, emanations that are sensed by Julie's younger brother Thomas. A Down's syndrome child, Thomas is telepathically gifted and able to warn Bobby of the demons who threaten Julie. Horror follows horror with each crime perpetrated by Candy & Co. as they come ever closer to the Dakotas and other prey. Besides episodes of shriek-worthy suspense, the book features out-of-body flights, and data on insects and gems of impossible origins, no less unnatural than the Pollard villains, who could incite envy in Lucifer himself.
Tom Dunleavy, a former professional basketball player and local East Hampton legend, is getting by as an underworked and unmotivated attorney. His sports glory days and his one true love are long in the past, but he gets second chances at personal and professional redemption when three locals are gunned down, apparently in the aftermath of racial tensions arising from a heated pickup game of hoops. The police seize on Dante Halleyville, the country's best high school star, as their suspect, and Dunleavy must dust off his old courtroom skills and enlist his lost love, Kate Costello, as his partner.
In this well-crafted story by the author of Storyville (Viking, 1993), Josie Tatternall, a military widow in her seventies, is inspired by a friend's nearly fatal illness to call together her own three daughters in particular, her estranged daughter, Cam, who has not been home since the death of her father years ago. What starts out as a family gathering for the twilight of Josie's life actually marks the beginning of her understanding of her achievements and, quite unexpectedly, her second chance at love. The story introduces a cast of memorable characters, primarily Josie herself, who fully reminds us that life, love, and growth are not limited to any particular age.
In the midst of his FBI training, former Police Detective Alex Cross is called in to investigate The Wolf, an ex-KGB agent turned master criminal, with links to the Russian Mafia, who uses the Internet to fulfill the fantasies of some of the sickest sociopaths in recent popular fiction. Each of these well-heeled villains pays megabucks to have his current obsession, male or female, stalked, kidnapped, and delivered--to him. As the complex plot unfolds, narrators Peter J. Fernandez and Denis O'Hare offer a variety of stunning characterizations. Alex has clarity and energy, The Wolf is vicious and sadistic, and the cyber-weirdos, particularly Mr. Potter and the Art Director, are despicable. Patterson's plot, rife with imprisonment, torture, rape, and murder, gives Fernandez and O'Hare plenty to sink their teeth into.
For LAPD homicide cop Harry Bosch -- hero, maverick, nighthawk -- the body in the drainpipe at Mulholland dam is more than another anonymous statistic. This one is personal.
The dead man, Billy Meadows, was a fellow Vietnam "tunnel rat" who fought side by side with him in a nightmare underground war that brought them to the depths of hell. Now, Bosch is about to relive the horrors of Nam. From a dangerous maze of blind alleys to a daring criminal heist beneath the city to the tortuous link that must be uncovered, his survival instincts will once again be tested to their limit.
Joining with an enigmatic female FBI agent, pitted against enemies within his own department, Bosch must make the agonizing choice between justice and vengeance, as he tracks down a killer whose true face will shock him.
The Black Echo won the Edgar Award for Best First Mystery Novel awarded by the Mystery Writers of America.
Captured at Gettysburg, imprisoned in Andersonville, Wilton McCleary lost his innocence in the Civil War. But on the streets of Philadelphia he's found a home---as a grizzled city detective facing squalor and pathos every day on the beat. Now the whole world is celebrating a glorious future at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. But on the fringes of this massive exposition, McCleary wades into a drowning pool of murder, depravity, and deception that can only end with a dark ride on...THE BLACK MARIA.
While countries from around the world display their gleaming new inventions in the Centennial, nearby is a labyrinth of festering streets called Shantyville, with its opium dens, criminals, and freak shows. Here, Wilton McCleary comes across the butchered body of a girl. As McCleary grapples with a killing his own police superiors want to ignore, he realizes that he had come face to face with the girl's killer, and that the young man is linked to the family of a powerful industrialist, his callow son, and his beautiful, high-strung daughter. Suddenly a murder investigation takes McCleary into a family's private madness and a web of blackmail and revenge that will force him to solve a series of unspeakable crimes---or commit one of his own.