I am delighted to welcome author Lisa Black! Check out her latest Gardiner and Renner book, That Darkness.
I despise controversy. Hate it. If two people are about to get in a fight I don’t whip out my cell phone camera, I leave the room. I grew up with a short-fused older sister while caught in between two perpetually squabbling besties—all of whom I secretly blame for my decision to marry a man with a fuse so short he made those girls look like Strawberry Shortcake. So suffice to say the last thing I ever try to do in my novels is court controversy. I ignore ‘hot-button’ issues, politics, religion, child-rearing techniques, food preferences and whether or not Picasso is overrated. But I’m afraid I may have edged too close to that cliff with this one.
In That Darkness, it seems like a typical week for crime scene specialist Maggie Gardiner–a gang boss shot in an alley, a lost girl draped over an ancient grave, a human trafficker dumped in the river–nothing all that out of the ordinary for the Cleveland police department as spring turns toward summer along the Erie banks. The methods are usual, the victims unsurprising–but when she notices a pattern, a tenuous similarity among the cases, she begins to realize that her days will never be typical again. How much of her life, her career, her friends, will she be willing to risk to do what’s right?
Jack Renner is a killer who does not kill for any of the conventional reasons…no mania, no personal demons. He simply wants to make the world a safer place. He doesn’t think of himself as a dangerous person–but he can’t let anyone stop him. Not even someone as well-meaning as Maggie Gardiner.
Maggie has the self-sufficiency of a born bit-of-a-loner. She works with a bevy of clever experts surrounded by armed police officers. She is both street smart and book smart, having seen the worst the city has to offer.
But Maggie Gardiner is not safe. And, until she can draw Jack Renner into the light, neither is anyone else.
I love the book. But as the release date loomed I began to have nightmares of getting irate emails from fans saying things such as I can’t believe you ended the book like that and I’ll never read one of yours again. Not to mention one-star reviews on Amazon with titles like Tremendously Disappointing. I shudder at the thought. Then I shudder again. Then I break out the vodka.
Unfortunately—or fortunately—I still wouldn’t change a word. I wrote it the way I did because I had to write it the way I did. That’s the only reason I can give. But to a writer, that’s the best reason of all.
About the book:
In this tour de force of psychological suspense, bestselling author Lisa Black draws from her experience as a forensic investigator to create two of the most fascinating characters in crime fiction: a killer with a unique sense of justice and a woman in a lifelong relationship with death…
As a forensic investigator for the Cleveland Police Department, Maggie Gardiner has seen her share of Jane Does. The latest is an unidentified female in her early teens, discovered in a local cemetery. More shocking than the girl’s injuries–for Maggie at least–is the fact that no one has reported her missing. She and the detectives assigned to the case (including her cop ex-husband) are determined to follow every lead, run down every scrap of evidence. But the monster they seek is watching every move, closer to them than they could possibly imagine.
Jack Renner is a killer. He doesn’t murder because he enjoys it, or because he believes himself omnipotent, or for any reason other than to make the world a safer place. When he follows the trail of this Jane Doe to a locked room in a small apartment where eighteen teenaged girls are anything but safe, he knows something must be done. But his pursuit of their captor takes an unexpected turn.
Maggie Gardiner finds another body waiting for her in the autopsy room–and a host of questions that will challenge everything she believes about justice, morality, and the true nature of evil …
Praise For Lisa Black and her bestselling novels
“Lisa Black writes with immediacy and unmatched authenticity.” –Jeff Lindsay, New York Timesbestselling author of the DEXTER series
“In Black’s skillful hands, you’re in for a surprise…a gifted storyteller.” –Ridley Pearson
“A must-read for fans of Cornwell and Grafton.” —Booklist
“Black, who is a forensic scientist, certainly knows her field.” —Publishers Weekly
“Quite simply, one of the best storytellers around.” –Tess Gerritsen
“Highly entertaining…Fans of forensic thrillers will look forward to seeing more.” —Library Journal
“Pulse-pounding adventure…devilishly clever.” —Mystery Scene
“Lisa Black heightens the suspense.” —South Florida Sun-Sentinel
About the author:
Lisa Black has spent over 20 years in forensic science, first at the coroner’s office in Cleveland Ohio and now as a certified latent print examiner and CSI at a Florida police dept. Her books have been translated into 6 languages, one reached the NYT Bestseller’s List and one has been optioned for film and a possible TV series.
4/16 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™
THAT DARKNESS by Lisa Black. Kensington (April 26, 2016). ISBN 978-1496701886. 336p.