Detective Sloane Pearson's new assignment isn't exactly a step up on the career ladder. It's tough enough being the only woman in Area Five's Violent Crimes unit, surrounded by male colleagues who run the gamut from meathead to Neanderthal. It's even tougher working the unit's Sex Crimes beat, where forensic evidence routinely sits on the shelf for months, and victims are often treated more like suspects by the State Attorney's office.
When the brutal rape of a local Realtor matches the description of another recent assault, Sloane is convinced there's a serial rapist on the loose. Disregarding orders to close the case and move on, she begins digging into the connections between victims, uncovering a pattern that leads her to some of Chicago's most powerful business and political figures. As the pieces slowly fall into place, Sloane finds herself beset on all sides by competing interests—from a young newspaper reporter eager to make his name, to an influential real estate developer eager to expand his empire. Everyone's got an agenda, and almost everyone's a suspect. Sloane must untangle the deceptions and get to the truth before the rapist strikes again—and before her rapidly expanding stable of enemies manages to shut her down for good.
"Schwegel can out-hard-boil the best of them, from Chandler to Connelly, and the intensity of her character's father complex rivals Ross Macdonald's."
"... a unique vision of Chicago on virtually every page..."
"Schwegel has fashioned an unusual blend of crime thriller and police procedural.... her ingenious character-driven plotting will earn your admiration."
—San Diego Union Tribune
Minotaur Books, hardcover, July 2009, ISBN: 9780312364274
Minotaur Books, mass market paperback, June 2010, ISBN: 9780312357344
Minotaur Books, ebook, April 2010