Maggie Gardiner, forensics expert for the Cleveland police department, and Jack Renner, a homicide detective with a killer secret, return in bestselling author Lisa Black's new thriller as they confront the darkest threat yet to their careers—and their lives.
The body of fifteen-year-old Rachael Donahue—abandoned by society, raised in foster homes, and violently unapproachable—has been discovered at the bottom of a stairwell at Firebird, the secure facility for juvenile offenders in Cleveland. For Maggie and Jack, Rachael's death comes with a disturbing twist—the girl may have been involved with a much older man.
But Rachael's not the only resident at the center to come to a dead end. Firebird's ten-year-old “wild child" has overdosed in the infirmary—back-to-back tragedies that appear to be terrible accidents. As a forensic investigator, Maggie knows appearances can be deceiving. And Jack knows all about deceit. That's why they both suspect a cold-blooded murderer is carrying out a deadly agenda.
As Maggie's ex-husband gets nearer to uncovering the secrets that Maggie and Jack must hide, it becomes increasingly harder for them to protect a new and vulnerable victim from a killer with unfathomable demons.
New York Times bestselling author Lisa Black introduced the characters of Maggie Gardiner and Jack Renner in her acclaimed suspense novel That Darkness and continued their story in Unpunished, Perish, Suffer the Children, and Let Justice Descend. As a forensic scientist at the Cuyahoga County Coroner’s Office, she analyzed gunshot residue on hands and clothing, hairs, fibers, paint, glass, DNA, blood and many other forms of trace evidence, as well as crime scenes. Now she is a latent print examiner and crime scene analyst for the Cape Coral Police Department in Florida, working mostly with fingerprints and crime scenes.
Lisa is a member of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, the International Association for Identification, and the International Association of Bloodstain Pattern Analysts, and she is a Certified Crime Scene Analyst and Certified Latent Print Examiner. She has testified in court as an expert witness more than sixty-five times. Her books have been translated into six languages. She lives near Fort Myers, Florida. Visit her on Facebook, Twitter, or at www.lisa-black.com.
PRAISE FOR LISA BLACK and her Gardiner and Renner Thrillers THAT DARKNESS "Lisa Black always delivers authentic characters in riveting stories. That Darkness takes things to a spellbinding new level." -Jeff Lindsay, creator of the Dexter series "Intriguing forensic details help drive the plot to its satisfying conclusion." -Publishers Weekly "A crime thriller with a sharp psychological edge running through it. . . . If you are a lover of mystery and suspense, this is an absolute must read." -Suspense Magazine UNPUNISHED "A murder at the struggling Cleveland Herald reunites forensic investigator Maggie Gardiner and detective Jack Renner, who share each other's dreadful secrets. Solid mystery fare." -Booklist "This terrific mystery will keep you guessing at every turn-and turning pages as fast as you can." -Hank Phillippi Ryan
"As always with Black, this psychological suspense is incredible." -Suspense Magazine
"The plot hurtles to an adrenaline-fueled conclusion that is sure to hook Black's devoted readership." -Booklist
SUFFER THE CHILDREN
"A well-plotted and -paced thriller with a pair of intriguing protagonists." -Booklist"