A former cop takes on a case as a favor to a friend in a jam.
John Bekker was once an excellent cop. After his wife was raped and murdered in front of his daughter, however, he sought refuge in a bottle. Now he’s sober, his daughter is slowly recovering, and his romance with his sister-in-law, Janet, looks to be leading to a stable family life. Even so, he takes a chance on ruining it all when state prosecutor Carly Simms is found drunk, bloody and naked in a cheap motel with the much younger and very dead Jon Hughes. Although not even Simms knows whether she’s guilty, Bekker agrees to investigate and gets her a great lawyer. A big favor Bekker did for a dying Mafioso earned him not only a lot of money, but also many useful connections. Since Hughes, a computer programmer, was raised in an orphanage in Utah, Bekker goes there to investigate, garnering a list of names of his friends and a chance to interview some of them. Despite the evidence, Bekker thinks Simms is innocent. He’s very curious about her missing gun, Hughes’ equally missing computer and the fact that no one knows how the couple got from a bar to the motel. When several others are found dead, Bekker has lots of leads, but in the end, he must set himself up as bait in a plan to discover the truth.
The follow-up to Bekker’s strong debut (Sunset, 2012) is a pleasing combination of thriller and police procedural with some kinky twists.