The fragile line between life and death… Families that will never be the same…
When a tragic hit-and-run takes the life of a hardworking family man, multi-millionaire Christopher Hillington becomes the prime suspect, and the whole city of New York alights with speculation as to what happened.
But before the NYPD can establish Hillington’s guilt, he himself is brutally murdered in his own home. As he lays dying, he scrawls the name Casey Woods with his own blood, and the Forensic Instincts team is drawn into a complex mystery that has placed its president in the sights of a desperate killer.
A millionaire’s life is full of secrets and suspects. So as the baffled NYPD investigates Casey for the murder, and the body-count ratchets up, Casey herself becomes another potential victim. The FI team’s hardcore investigation has them twisting and turning through suspects and secrets, where the stakes intensify―and so does the collateral damage. As Casey and the team get closer to finding the killer, the unthinkable happens, and the life of one of FI’s own hangs in the blood-stained balance.
They say dead men tell no tales, but blood doesn’t lie. Peeling back layer after layer of deception, the team will cross whatever lines are necessary to solve the case, get justice for the families, and make their team whole again…unless the relentless killer gets to them first.
Genre: Suspense Thriller Published by: Bonnie Meadow Publishing Publication Date: March 2024 Number of Pages: 384 ISBN: 9781682320631 (ISBN10: 1682320634) Series: Forensic Instincts (#10) Book Links:Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookShop.org | Goodreads
Read an excerpt:
Offices of Forensic Instincts
Tribeca, New York
Main conference room
Monday, 9:40 a.m.
Casey Woods, the president of Forensic Instincts, stood at the head of the oval table, her jaw having dropped. She pressed her iPhone closer to her ear, and tried to reconcile herself, both to who the caller was, and the reason for her call.
She certainly didn’t sound like the Angela King that Casey knew. And why in the name of heaven was she reaching out to Casey, of all people?
Angela repeated her original demand: “I need you to meet me now—as in drop everything and get over here.” This time her voice was commanding but shaken.
Shaken? Angela King?
Casey’s mind raced.
Angela was a high-powered and aggressive criminal defense attorney at Harris, Porter, & Donnelly. A virtual barracuda. Rumor had it that she was next up to make partner. No surprise. She successfully defended the richest of the rich, from corporate executives, to wealthy entrepreneurs, to “businessmen” with rumored links to Organized Crime—a fact she chose to overlook since they were affluent enough to pay her fees. She and Forensic Instincts were on opposite sides of law enforcement. They’d battled it out more than once the criminals that FI had helped catch becoming the very criminals Angela would defend.
Needless to say, the FI team and Angela weren’t friends.
And yet, here she was, calling Casey on an urgent, time-is-of-the-essence matter—one she seemed incredibly high-strung about.
“Casey?” Angela repeated. “Did you hear me?”
Casey lowered herself into a chair. “I heard you. What is this about? And why me, of all people?”
“You’ll see for yourself,” Angela replied. She rattled off the address of a luxury skyscraper on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. “Hurry. I’m jeopardizing my career by waiting to call 9-1-1. I can’t wait much longer. But you have to view the scene first and later provide me with some answers. No more questions. Just come. I have a key to the building’s back door. I’ll let you in. We’ll use the freight elevator.”
Casey’s common sense was urging her to refuse. 9-1-1 meant a crime scene, and questions meant involving her. Both those things were screaming for her to stay away. She pushed aside that inner voice. She was too intrigued to refuse. “I’m on my way.”
She shrugged into her wool winter coat as she called John Nickels, Forensic Instincts’ number one on their security team. Then, she blew out the front door, not waiting to fill the FI team in on where she was going. There was no time. Plus, they’d only try to talk her out of it.
Holiday decorations were glistening everywhere, and tiny snowflakes danced in the air.
Casey didn’t notice any of it.
John pulled around a few minutes later, and Casey hopped into the car, gave him the address, and urged him to hurry.
With a brief nod, John was on his way, navigating the FDR Drive in record time. He got Casey to her destination in thirteen minutes. He dropped her off around back, far from the doorman’s view. Then, he waited to return her to the brownstone once her meeting was over, as per her instructions.
Angela was pacing inside the building, and opened the door to let Casey in the moment she saw her. No matter how dire the occasion, Angela always looked stunning. An Armani cobalt blue pants suit that set off her dark skin, matching four-inch Louboutin heels, and long wavy black hair styled at the highest end salon. She carried herself like a queen. In short, she was a knock-out.
Now she looked more rattled than Casey had ever seen her.
“Let’s go,” she said. She led the way to the freight elevator, where she and Casey rode up.
“Tell me what’s going on,” Casey stated flatly.
Angela didn’t answer. She glanced at her Apple Watch, her gaze snapping up as the elevator stopped on the twenty-first floor.
The doors slid open.
Angela paused only long enough to ensure that Casey was right behind her. Then, she strode down the hall, made a turn, and halted in front of Apartment Twenty-One B. She unlocked the door, pulled Casey inside, and faced her to offer the first few words of an explanation.
“This is the home of my client, Christopher Hillington. We had a nine-thirty AM meeting scheduled to be held here.”
Casey’s brows rose. Christopher Hillington was a renowned and phenomenally wealthy managing director of the private equity firm YNE. He was also a major suspect in a vehicular homicide, and Casey knew through various news sources that he’d been questioned several times by the NYPD and was on the verge of arrest.
“I see you know of him,” Angela said. “Given the circumstances, I’m not surprised.” She gestured toward a breathtaking sunken living room. “In here.”
Casey bit back her question about what Angela had just said. She sensed she was about to get her answers. So she remained silent.
The two women stepped down and Angela stood to a side and waited.
Casey got the full view immediately.
Christopher Hillington’s body was crumpled on the Oriental carpet beside his desk, blood pooling out around him. His head was bashed in, clearly having been struck multiple times by a heavy object. The bloodied sledge hammer lying next to the body was obviously the murder weapon. Judging from the damage done, the killer had been, not only determined, but brutal.
Casey eyeballed the scene, feeling sickened as well as confused. She was about to ask Angela what this horrific scene had to do with her when she spotted the letters, written in blood, on the lower edge of the desk, right beside Hillington’s outstretched arm.
She walked over, careful not to touch anything, squatted down, and squinted. The two words were completely legible, and they made Casey’s blood run cold.
Excerpt from Struck Dead by Andrea Kane. Copyright 2024 by Andrea Kane. Reproduced with permission from Andrea Kane. All rights reserved.
Andrea Kane is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thirty-two novels, including eighteen psychological thrillers and fourteen historical romantic suspense titles. With her signature style, Kane creates unforgettable characters and confronts them with life-threatening danger. As a master of suspense, she weaves them into exciting, carefully-researched stories, pushing them to the edge—and keeping her readers up all night.
Kane’s first contemporary suspense thriller, Run for Your Life, became an instant New York Times bestseller.
She followed with a string of bestselling psychological thrillers including No Way Out, Twisted and Drawn in Blood.
Her latest in the highly successful Forensic Instincts series, Struck Dead, showcases the dynamic, eclectic team of investigators as they hunt down a desperate killer who’s threatened one of their own. The first showcase of Forensic Instincts’ talents came with the New York Times bestseller, The Girl Who Disappeared Twice, followed by The Line Between Here and Gone, The Stranger You Know, The Silence That Speaks, The Murder That Never Was, A Face To Die For, Dead In A Week, No Stone Unturned, At Any Cost, and Struck Dead.
Kane’s beloved historical romantic suspense novels include My Heart’s Desire, Samantha, Echoes in the Mist, and Wishes in the Wind.
With a worldwide following of passionate readers, her books have been published in more than twenty languages.
Kane lives in New Jersey with her family. She’s an avid crossword puzzle solver and a diehard Yankees fan.
Author Hometown – Warren, New Jersey
Book Formats: ePub, Print, Edelweiss Hosting Options: Review, Interview, Guest Post, Showcase Giveaway: There will be a tour-wide PICT Giveaway More: According to the author Struck Dead does not include: Excessive Strong Language, Graphic Violence, Explicit Sexual Scenes, or Rape. However, readers may encounter content that is considered to be another trigger situation. Generally the content is considered to be: Moderate (moderate language, moderate sexual content, high level of sexual tension & content, no more than a scene that’s graphic or explicit) content. At this time, PICT staff have not yet read this book and cannot give additional information.
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