The 19th Precinct, Book 1
WARNING: Graphic language and explicit sex scenes (M/F).
LENGTH: Novel (74,600 words)
When his latest case falls on him and his partner--quite literally--Detective Nick Markov knows the destruction of his car by a not-yet-cold body is the least of his worries. The deceased is prominent businessman, Andrew Langan, and suicide is swiftly ruled out after Nick pursues the killers down twenty-seven flights--and loses them.
To his superiors' frustrations, Nick doesn't believe Langan's soon-to-be ex-wife, Augusta, is guilty, even though she has motive, opportunity, no alibi and a shady past. The only reasons Nick has for going against logical dictates are the feeling in his gut and the constriction in his chest.
Augusta is thrust back into an unwanted spotlight and her quiet life shattered. Then things go downhill. In between dodging the media, she confronts muggers, kidnappers and goons better dressed than she. With Nick Markov, who dredges up a past she'd rather forget and feelings she'd rather not acknowledge, Augusta must race to unravel her late husband's secrets before she finds herself skydiving without a parachute.
This book was previously published in an altered form entitled Fall Dead by Cerridwen Press/Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc. in 2005 and is revised.
"Damn it, Ethan," Nick Markov muttered, trying to steady his drunken partner and keep him from falling flat on his face and doing permanent damage to it. "Your wife's going to have my ass for this."
Ethan Murtagh's scowl bordered on a pout more suited to a two-year-old. "I can walk on my own two feet," he said, his words only slightly slurred. He stumbled, nearly taking them both down.
Nick grunted and muttered, "Right."
It was several frustrating moments before Nick managed to strap his partner into the passenger seat of the black SUV parked in front of the bar. Ethan had been, once again, trying to drink himself into a stupor. He didn't handle disagreements with his significant other well. The current dispute was over the photographer who had shot his wife's swimsuit spread the previous week in the Bahamas.
"You'd better hope Torie's asleep when I get you home," Nick said, getting behind the wheel.
A disgruntled sound came from the sprawled figure beside him. Nick answered with a grunt of his own as he pulled out. At almost one in the morning on a Wednesday night, it was relatively quiet in the Sixties on the Upper East Side, so it was a few short minutes before he was turning onto Fifth Avenue. Deciding it wouldn't take long to get Ethan upstairs and into his nineteenth-floor condo, Nick stopped the SUV in front of the building, killed the engine and flipped down his visor to display his credentials. He released his seat belt buckle, then reached over for his partner's. Ethan mumbled a protest, swatted at Nick's helping hand and fumbled with the door handle. Suppressing the urge to roll his eyes, Nick grabbed a fistful of his partner's jacket.
"Stay put," Nick said. "You open that door, you'll land on your pretty face and Torie will never forgive me."
Ethan fell back in his seat, head tilted back, eyes closed. Satisfied, Nick opened his door, got out and made his way to the passenger side door. Ethan didn't move when he pulled the door open. Nick silently groaned at the possibility of having to carry his less-than-petite partner upstairs.
Before Nick could reach for his semiconscious partner, small pebbles pinged the roof of the SUV and bounced off his head and the sidewalk. Frowning, he skimmed a hand over his hair and his gaze across the roof of his vehicle. The pebbles glittered faintly under the mellow glow of the streetlight.
Not pebbles. Glass shards.
Nick glanced up--and froze, his gaze transfixed by the body above him.
Copyright © 2005, 2011 by Ann Bruce. All rights reserved.
About Ann Bruce
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Published December 15, 2011
by Ann Bruce.
Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Romance, Literature & Fiction.