The investigation of LaShawn Tompkins's murder seems straightforward enough. Upon his release from death row, the ex-drug dealer returned to his old neighborhood, where he was gunned down on his mother's doorstep. Just another case of turf warfare.
At least that's what it looks like on the surface to Seattle investigator J. P. Beaumont, who's been handed the assignment under the strictest confidence. But as Beau starts digging, the situation becomes more complicated than he'd thought. It appears that LaShawn really had turned over a new leaf at the King Street Mission and his murder was premeditated. Someone had targeted the man for death.
Meanwhile, Beau's lover and fellow cop, Mel Soames, is given her own hush-hush investigation. A routine check on registered sex offenders has revealed a disturbing pattern: they're dying off at an alarming rate, and not all due to natural causes. Details of the latest death suggest an inside job, and Mel isn't letting this go.
Suddenly, Mel's investigation becomes entangled with Beau's, and the two begin to uncover a nightmarish conspiracy that could involve people in high places—including their own top brass.
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J. A. Jance is the New York Times bestselling author of the J. P. Beaumont series, the Joanna Brady series, the Ali Reynolds series, and five interrelated thrillers about the Walker family, as well as a volume of poetry. Born in South Dakota and brought up in Bisbee, Arizona, Jance lives with her husband in Seattle, Washington, and Tucson, Arizona.From Publishers Weekly:
In bestseller Jance's complex, overlong 18th J.P. Beaumont novel (after Long Time Gone), the Seattle special homicide investigator works three cases simultaneously. The first involves the murder of a wrongly imprisoned ex-con, the second the disappearance of a whistle-blowing electronics engineer who vanished the day Mount Saint Helen's erupted in 1980, the third the deaths of several former felons. Meanwhile, Mel Soames, Beau's female colleague and lover, looks into the unexplained deaths of recently released sex crimes perpetrators as well as the disappearance of a childhood friend's abusive father. Unbelievably, all Beaumont's and Mel's assignments meld into one, except for the case of the missing engineer. The detectives are helped by the delightful Todd Hatcher, a young forensic economist and statistical analyst, but the exceptionally busy plot, host of characters, incredible coincidences, ignored clues and red herrings add up to a less than stellar effort from the usually reliable Jance. (July)
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