Synopses & Reviews
It is a Charm City tradition—an annual visit to the Baltimore gravesite of Edgar Allan Poe on the renowned authors birthday by a mysterious cloaked figure bearing gifts of three roses and a half bottle of cognac. This year, private investigator Tess Monaghan is among the witnesses of the locally cherished rite. And on this frigid January night, she sees two caped visitors approaching Poes resting place. One leaves his tribute and escapes. The other dies there, felled by an assassins bullet. Curiosity brought Tess here to observe the desecration—and common sense tells her to lay low in its wake. But someone wants Tess involved in the murder investigation in the worst way. An anonymous stranger who leaves roses and cognac and cryptic clues on her doorstep; someone who knows her habits, her haunts . . . and what she knows. And suddenly home is a safe haven no longer.
New York Times bestselling author Laura Lippman s Tess Monaghan must put her PI skills to the ultimate test when she falls into the crosshairs of a psychopath who knows everything about her.
For the past fifty years on the birth date of Edgar Allan Poe, a person wearing a cloak has placed three roses and a half bottle of cognac on the writer s gravesite. PI Tess Monaghan has never witnessed the event. But when John P. Kennedy, an eccentric antiques dealer, asks her to uncover the identity of the caped visitor, who he believes has duped him with the sale of an inauthentic antique, Tess decides to hold vigil on the night the cloaked stranger is expected to make an appearance. But the custom takes on a bizarre, fatal twist when two cloaked figures arrive. The imitator leaves his tribute and then makes his escape after shooting the first visitor.
Warning bells tell Tess to steer clear of this case. But when roses and cognac appear on her doorstep, Tess s curiosity is piqued. She soon discovers that John P. Kennedy has vanished into thin air and much of what he told her was questionable. Then the identity of the shooting victim comes to light, and all clues seem to point to the possibility he was the target of a hate crime. But Tess isn t convinced. What was his connection to the decades-long Edgar Allan Poe tradition and to the killer? When more cryptic clues are left at her home, Tess realizes that someone is watching her every move...someone who s bent on killing again.
About the Author
Since Laura Lippman's debut in 1997, she has been heralded for thoughtful, timely crime novels set in her beloved hometown of Baltimore. Now a perennial New York Times bestseller, she lives in Baltimore and New Orleans with her family.