The Big Secret by Pete Earley

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Federal Chief Investigator Nick LeRue is an expert on unraveling a crime; he's brought down some of the smoothest operators on Capitol Hill and uncovered dangerous secrets in politicians' pasts. In his personal life, however, his commitment to his job has left him unlucky in love. When his ex-girlfriend, investigative journalist Heather Cole, appears after a long period of silence, things start looking up. But Nick is about to learn that nothing is ever what it seems.

Surprisingly, the woman who approaches Nick isn't his ex at all, but her twin sister, Melanie Cole. The two sisters share an unusually strong bond, one that allows them to sense when the other is in danger and even visit one another in their dreams. Melanie has been seeing images of her sister being held captive by an unseen man; somehow she knows that time is running out for Heather.

Though skeptical of the sisters' connection, Nick follows Heather's trail to Pushmataha, Mississippi. It appears that she was close to uncovering the town's darkest and bloodiest secret---the beating and lynching of a young black man in the 1955 when she mysteriously vanished. A photograph of the event reveals that all but two of the mob have already died. One of the survivors is Jeb Rogge, the town's most powerful and dangerous man. But why would Jeb get involved in a crime that would obviously point to him?

The town's residents seem to know something they're not telling Nick, and Melanie's dreams are becoming more and more intense. As more and more of the pieces fly together, it becomes all too clear that whoever has covered up the racial murder is willing to keep it hidden at any cost, even if it means killing again.

Combining an intense paranormal thriller with edge-of-your seat mystery fiction, Pete Earley's The Big Secret will keep you guessing until the unbelievable end.

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About Pete Earley

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Pete Earley is a former Washington Post reporter and winner of the Mystery Writers of America's Edgar for Best Fact Crime Book in 1996 for Circumstantial Evidence: Death, Life, and Justice in a Southern Town. His book, which also won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, helped free an innocent man from Alabama's death row. Earley's account of the John Walker spy ring, Family of Spies, was a New York Times bestseller and CBS mini-series. The Hot House: Life Inside Leavenworth Prison was a national bestseller and was based on a year that Earley spent inside a maximum security federal prison as an author. Born in Arizona, Earley was reared in Colorado and worked for newspapers in Kansas and Oklahoma before moving to the Virginia suburbs of Washington D.C., where he lives with his wife, Patti. They have seven children.
Published May 1, 2005 by Forge Books. 368 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Horror, Literature & Fiction, Political & Social Sciences. Fiction

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They find the infamous tree used in the lynching, immortalized with the initials of the perpetrators and known as the “trophy tree.” Heather recognizes one of her captors as an influential Washingtonian, Senator Nehemiah Peterson, and, shortly thereafter, with the help of local Sheriff Moorehead,...

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Publishers Weekly

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U.S. Senate investigator Nick LeRue spends most of his time vetting nominees for federal judgeships—that is, until he's contacted by Melanie Cole, who wants him to track down her twin, Heather, a reporter who's vanished from the small Mississippi town where she'd gone to research a 1955 lynching.

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