Sympathy for the Devil by Christopher Chambers
An Angela Bivens Thriller

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Be careful what you wish for . . .
FBI Special Agent Angela Bivens has just won a hard-fought racial and sex discrimination lawsuit against the Bureau. She should be euphoric -- all she ever wanted to be was a field agent. But the women she filed the suit with have fled the Bureau, leaving Angela alone to deal with her cynical, ultrapolitical superiors. They throw her a bone by sending her to help the befuddled and apathetic D.C. police solve two seemingly unrelated cases -- the brutal murder of two teenage girls and the macabre, ritualized executions of rival drug dealers.

The cops see the victims as routine casualties of a drug war, but Angela begins to uncover a far more extensive network of horrors. The threads seem to lead right from the case files into her personal life and her hot, burgeoning love affair with Trey Williams, a well-connected D.C. lawyer, scion of an elite family, or, as her girlfriends call him, the "black JFK Jr." Although Trey is everything a woman could want, he is also shackled with a heroin-addicted twin brother nicknamed Pluto who is obsessed with myths and the occult and is fast becoming Angela's prime suspect in this wave of shocking murders.

After she saves the life of a fellow officer in a shoot-out, Angela becomes the FBI's golden girl, a media-anointed local hero. But is the FBI setting her up for an even bigger fall? She can't trust her superiors. She can't trust her boyfriend. Faced with the hard facts and following her gut instincts, Angela feels that she has no choice but to solve these cases and avenge the innocent victims on her own.

Played out against a vivid and realistic portrait of Washington -- from the halls of Congress and swank gathering places of the city's African American elite to the gritty, mournful streets where gang warfare remains a fact of life --

Sympathy for the Devil introduces a remarkable new crime-fighting heroine whose struggle to reconcile the pulls of love and duty, ambition and self-doubt makes this an utterly compelling thriller. Fans of Grace Edwards and Valerie Wilson Wesley, whose stories feature strong African American women, and all readers looking for a riveting page-turner in the style of Patricia Cornwell or Thomas Harris will welcome this impressive debut novel from Christopher Chambers.

About Christopher Chambers

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CHRISTOPHER CHAMBERS is a former attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice. He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Published September 11, 2001 by Crown. 320 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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We meet her first brilliantly triumphant in a sex- and race-discrimination suit against the FBI, a success that forces her superiors to give her work commensurate with a star performer.

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Publishers Weekly

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Former Department of Justice attorney Chambers makes good use of his insider's knowledge of Washington in this promising debut novel, but an over-ambitious effort to cover a wide range of political, social and racial issues slows the narrative flow.

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