Synopses & Reviews
At the old family manse in Louisiana, Special Agent Pendergast is putting to rest long-ignored possessions reminiscent of his wife Helen's tragic death, only to make a stunning-and dreadful-discovery. Helen had been mauled by an unusually large and vicious lion while they were big game hunting in Africa. But now, Pendergast learns that her rifle-her only protection from the beast-had been deliberately loaded with blanks. Who could have wanted Helen dead...and why?
With Lieutenant Vincent D'Agosta's assistance, Pendergast embarks on a quest to uncover the mystery of his wife's murder. It is a journey that sends him deep into her past where he learns much that Helen herself had wished to keep hidden. Helen Pendergast had nursed a secret obsession with the famed naturalist-painter John James Audubon, in particular a long-lost painting of his known as the Black Frame.
As Pendergast probes more deeply into the riddle-the answer to which is revealed in a night of shocking violence, deep in the Louisiana bayou-he finds himself faced with an even greater question: who was the woman he married?
"Preston and Child up the emotional ante considerably in their 10th thriller featuring brilliant and eccentric FBI agent Aloysius Pendergast (after Cemetery Dance), one of the best in the series. For 12 years, Pendergast has believed that the death of his wife, Helen, in the jaws of a ferocious red-maned lion in Zambia was just a tragedy, but his chance examination of the gun she carried on the fateful day reveals that someone loaded it with blanks. Pendergast drags his longtime NYPD ally, Lt. Vincent D'Agosta, into a leave of absence that includes travel to Africa as well as the American South. The motive for Helen's murder appears to be linked to her fascination with John James Audubon and her quest for a mysterious lost Audubon painting. Once again, the bestselling authors show they have few peers at creating taut scenes of suspense. Their restraint in the book's early sections make the payoffs all the more compelling." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Yesterday, Special Agent Pendergast still mourned the loss of his beloved wife, Helen, who died in a tragic accident in Africa twelve years ago.
Today, he discovers she was murdered.
Tomorrow, he will learn her most guarded secrets, leaving him to wonder: Who was the woman I married? Why was she murdered? And, above all . . . Who murdered her?
Revenge is not sweet: It is essential.
About the Author
The thrillers of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child "stand head and shoulders above their rivals" (Publishers Weekly
). Preston and Child's Relic
and The Cabinet of Curiosities
were chosen by readers in a National Public Radio poll as being among the one hundred greatest thrillers ever written, and Relic
was made into a number-one box office hit movie. They are coauthors of the famed Pendergast series and their recent novels include Fever Dream
, Cold Vengeance
, Two Graves
, and Gideon's Corpse
. Preston's acclaimed nonfiction book, The Monster of Florence
, is being made into a movie starring George Clooney. Lincoln Child is a former book editor who has published five novels of his own, including the huge bestseller Deep Storm
Readers can sign up for The Pendergast File, a monthly "strangely entertaining note" from the authors, at their website, www.PrestonChild.com. The authors welcome visitors to their alarmingly active Facebook page, where they post regularly.