Red Cat (John March Mysteries)

3.67 avg rating
( 308 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780307263162: Red Cat (John March Mysteries)

Black Maps (“A stunner, a great debut roaring out of the gate”—Newsday) . . . Death’s Little Helpers (“Breaks new ground in detective fiction”—The Washington Post) . . . and now Red Cat, the third riveting installment in Peter Spiegelman’s thrilling series of novels featuring the brooding New York City private investigator John March.

With a troubled past and a job that attracts too much attention from the law, March has always been the black sheep of his staid merchant-banking family. Which makes the identity of his latest client all the more surprising: his smug older brother David.

David is desperate and deeply scared, and with good reason: a woman he met on the Internet, and then for several torrid sexual encounters, is stalking him. David knows her only as Wren, but she seems to know everything about him—and she’s threatening to tell all to his wife and his colleagues. His marriage, his career, and his reputation at stake, David wants John to find this woman and warn her off. Reeling from these revelations, John begins the search for Wren, and what he discovers both alarms and fascinates him. Part actress, part playwright, part performance-artist and noir pornographer, Wren is a powerfully compelling mystery—though no more so, John discovers, than his own brother.

But when a body surfaces in the East River, March suddenly finds he’s no longer searching for a stalker. Now he’s hunting a killer—and following a trail that leads ever closer to David’s door. . . .

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Peter Spiegelman is the author of Black Maps, which won the 2004 Shamus Award for Best First P.I. Novel, and Death’s Little Helpers; both novels feature private detective and Wall Street refugee John March. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Mr. Spiegelman spent nearly twenty years in the financial services and software industries, and worked with leading banks and brokerages around the world. He lives in Connecticut.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

I’d seen him angry plenty of times. I’d seen him dismissive, contemptuous, reproachful, and mocking too—and, more often than not, I’d seen that bad karma pointed in my direction. But in the thirty- four years I’d known him, I’d never seen my brother quite like this before. I’d never seen him scared.

David ran a hand through his ginger hair and knocked it from its slick alignment. He rose from my sofa and whisked imaginary dust from his spotless gray trousers and paced again before the long wall of windows. I shook my head, as much from the surprise of him turning up at my door on a Monday morning—or, indeed, any time—as from what I’d heard.

“Jesus Christ, David—on the Internet? What the hell were you thinking?”

He stopped to look out at the rooftops and at the sun, struggling up an iron January sky. Reflected in the window glass, his face was lean and sharp-featured—fairer-haired, lighter-eyed, more sour and lined than my own, but still too similar. At six feet tall he was barely an inch shorter than I, but he seemed smaller than that now. His smile was tight and bitter.

“Is this your usual approach with prospective clients—to interrupt their stories so you can exercise your own disapproval?” He flicked at a speck of nothing on the sleeve of his suit jacket.

The irony of him complaining about my disapproval was lost on David just then, but I fought the urge to point it out. Nor did I comment that he wasn’t so much telling his story as wandering around the edges of it. I knew it would be futile. Unsure of what to do with his fear, and unused to discussing it with anyone, least of all with me, David was falling back on more familiar and reliable behaviors, like annoyed and patronizing. I’d seen clients go through it before; fighting didn’t help.

David turned around and made an elaborate survey of my loft—the kitchen at one end, the bedroom and bath at the other, the high ceilings, cast-iron columns, bookshelves, and sparse furnishings in between. He pursed his lips in disapproval. “I haven’t been here since it was Lauren’s,” he said. Lauren was our younger sister, and still the owner of the apartment. I’d been subletting the place for the past five years. “She did more with it,” he added. I kept quiet. David wandered to a bookshelf and eyed the titles and smirked.

“Do people still read poetry?” he said. “People besides you, I mean.”

I sighed, and tried to bring him back to at least the neighborhood of his problem. “You exchanged names with this woman?”

His smirk vanished. “First names only, and not our real ones. At least, the one I gave her wasn’t real. I called myself Anthony.”

“And she . . . ?”

“Wren. She called herself Wren.”

“But now she knows your name—your real name.”

David smoothed his hair and smoothed his steel-blue tie. “Yes. When I think about it, it wouldn’t have been difficult. My wallet was in my suit jacket, and my suit jacket was in the closet or on the back of a chair. She could have gone through it while I was in the bathroom. I should have been more careful about that sort of thing, I suppose, but I assumed we both wanted anonymity. That is the point, after all.”

“The point of . . . ?”

David lifted his eyebrow to a familiar, impatient angle. “The point of the websites. The point of using words like ‘casual’ and ‘discreet’ in your posts.”

I nodded slowly. “You’re pretty familiar with the conventions.” David looked at me and said nothing. “By which I mean: I assume it wasn’t the first time you’d used one of these sites.”

“It wasn’t.”

“How many—”

He cut me off. “How is this relevant?”

I drained my coffee mug, rubbed the last smudges of sleep from my eyes, and counted to ten. “I don’t know what’s relevant and what’s not. I’m still trying to get the lay of the land.”

David sniffed. “Suffice it to say, there were other sites and other women.”

“Were they all onetime things?”

He walked back to the windows. A few sooty snowflakes were drifting down onto Sixteenth Street. David watched them drift. “Some, and some were three- or four-time things. Wren was four times.”

“None of the other women—”

“None of the others ever called me on the phone, John. None of them has shown up at my house. So can we drop them and stick to Wren?” His voice was shaky.

“You saw her four times, over what period?”

“Two months maybe.”

“From when to when?”

“From October to December. The last time was about six weeks ago.”

“When did the calls start?”

“New Year’s Day. She left a message on my office voicemail.”

“And since then?”

David turned toward me. Beneath the flawless Italian tailoring, his arms and legs were stiff as wire. His normally ruddy face was paper white. “In the past two weeks I’ve gotten four more calls at the office, three on my cell, and three at home. Four days ago she dropped by.”

“Does she say what she wants?”

“The two times she’s managed to get through to me she’s said she wants to meet again. She doesn’t seem to get the point of no.”

“She doesn’t say anything more?”

David examined his cuticles intently. “She says plenty more. I’ve saved a couple of the messages; you can hear for yourself.”

“Maybe you could give me a preview.”

He sighed impatiently. “She demands to see me; she won’t be dismissed or ignored. It’s a whole Fatal Attraction shtick. And she makes it clear that she knows where I work—not just my office number, but what I do and where. She mentions Ned, and threatens to call him if I don’t get in touch with her.” Ned is our brother, the eldest of the five of us. With our uncle Ben’s retirement the previous June, he’d also become the managing partner at Klein & Sons—the head guy at the merchant bank our great-grandfather started a few generations ago. Which also made him David’s boss.

“How are you supposed to get in touch with her?”

“The same way we arranged things before, by e-mail.”

“What else does she say?”

David stared at me. His blue eyes were weary but they didn’t waver. “She knows I’m married,” he said finally. “She mentioned Steph-

anie’s name, and a couple of events Steph had been at recently—

fund-raising things. She threatened to call her.”

I nodded. That was more than a glance through his wallet, though the research wouldn’t have been hard. David was a reasonably high-profile guy in some circles, and Google would do the trick. I recalled the mentions in the trade rags, last August, of David’s promotion to head of mergers and acquisitions at Klein. Those articles would probably appear at the top of the search results, but Stephanie’s name would come up too, along with a skein of social contacts.

“She’s done some homework,” I said.

Irritation rippled across David’s face. “You think?” He stalked to the kitchen counter and picked up his coffee mug. He drank from it and grimaced and emptied it in the sink. “Cold,” he said. He made it an accusation.

“Has she made good on her threats?”

“Do you think I’d be here if she had? There wouldn’t be much point, would there?”

I counted to ten again, and then to twenty. I was getting good at it. I’d had a lot of practice with David. “Has she tried to make good on them?”

“Does her little visit to my place count? Thank God Steph wasn’t home for that. Thank God I took care of the fucking doormen this Christmas.”

“So Stephanie doesn’t know about her?”

“No,” David said. His voice was empty of emotion again. “And neither does Ned, and I intend to keep it that way.”

A fine ambition, I thought, though perhaps not realistic. “Does Stephanie know about the other wo—”

“No, goddammit, and can we stick to the point here?” David’s fingers were white on the edge of my kitchen counter. I was running out of numbers.

I took a deep breath. “What happened when you and Wren were together?”

David’s look was a mix of irritation and “Are you some kind of idiot?” “What do you think happened? And if you’re looking for details, forget—”

“I’m not. But did she say or do anything out of the ordinary—

anything to make you think she had another agenda?”

“There was nothing,” he said, shaking his head. “Conversation tends to be . . . limited, and that’s how it was with her. She was maybe a little quieter than some of the others, a little more . . . inwardly turned . . . but that’s all.”

“And you didn’t say anything to her? Anything that might lead her to believe—”

“To believe what, that we were going to run off together or something? Get a cottage by the sea and raise a new generation of Marches? Do you think I’m stupid?” It was one of many thoughts that were colliding in my head, and that I’d so far managed to keep to myself. But David wasn’t making it easy. He ja...

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Bookhouse COM LLC
(Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.04
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf 2007-02-06 (2007)
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: > 20
Seller:
Ebooksweb COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf 2007-02-06, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. First Edition. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.05
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 4
Seller:
Qwestbooks COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.05
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 4
Seller:
Booklot COM LLC
(Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.06
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 4
Seller:
BookShop4U
(PHILADELPHIA, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.06
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 4
Seller:
Vital Products COM LLC
(Southampton, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169. Bookseller Inventory # Z0307263169ZN

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 5.06
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Your Online Bookstore
(Houston, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0307263169 Ships promptly. Bookseller Inventory # GBN1505CFCF112116H0255

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 6.51
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Spiegelman, Peter
Published by Knopf (2007)
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Academybookshop
(Long Island City, NY, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. New, excellent, clean condition, clean pages ***. Bookseller Inventory # A-22568

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 4.78
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Peter Spiegelman
Published by Knopf (New York) (2007)
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Dan Pope Books
(West Hartford, CT, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf (New York), 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. First edition, first printing. Hardbound. Fine in a fine dust jacket. A tight, clean copy, which appears unread. Red remainder dot lower edge. NOT price-clipped. Comes with archival-quality mylar dust jacket protector. Shipped in well padded box. Bookseller Inventory # Mystery-Copies-Stacks-02

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 7.50
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.95
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Peter Spiegelman
Published by Knopf (2007)
ISBN 10: 0307263169 ISBN 13: 9780307263162
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Knopf, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0307263169

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 9.23
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book