On a quiet suburban street in upstate Greenbury, New York, the brutally beaten body of a young man is discovered in the woods adjacent to an empty vacation home. Twenty-six-year-old Brady Neil a resident of the neighboring town of Hamilton, had no criminal record, few friends, worked full-time, and attended community college. But as Detective Peter Decker learns, the clean-cut kid is linked to the criminal world. When Brady was a baby, his father, Brandon Gratz, was convicted of robbing and killing the owners of a local jewelry store. While Gratz and his partner, Kyle Masterson, admitted to the robbery, they swore they left the owners, Glen and Lydia Levine, very much alive.
The experienced detective knows there’s more to this homicide case than the records show. As he digs into Gratz’s past, Decker begins to suspect that the son’s murder may be connected to the father’s sins. Before he can put together the pieces, Decker finds out that one of Brady Neil’s friends, Joseph Boch—aka Boxer—has gone missing. Heading to Boch’s house with his temporary new partner, Hamilton PD cop Lenora Baccus, they discover a bloodbath.
Who would savagely kill two innocent men—and why? Finding the answers will require all of Decker’s skill and knowledge, the help of his fellow Greenbury detectives, Tyler McAdams and Kevin Butterfield, and information gleaned from his wife Rina’s behind the scenes investigation to put all the pieces of this deadly puzzle together . . . and see justice done.
On a bright and crisp September morning, while walking a bucolic woodland trail, Rina Decker stumbles upon human remains once buried deep beneath the forest grounds. Immediately, she calls her husband, Peter, a former detective lieutenant with LAPD, now working for the local Greenbury Police. Within hours, a vista of beauty and tranquility is transformed into a frenetic crime scene. The body has been interred for years and there is scant physical evidence at the gravesite: a youthful skeleton, a skull wound and long dark strands of hair surrounding the bony frame. As Decker and his partner, Tyler McAdams, further investigate, they realize that they’re most likely dealing with a missing student from the nearby Five Colleges of Upstate—a well-known and well-respected consortium of higher learning where Rina works.
And when more human remains are found in the same area, Decker and McAdams know this isn’t just a one-off murder case. Short-staffed and with no convenient entry into the colleges, Decker enlists Rina’s help to act as the eyes and ears of campus gossip. Winding their way through a dangerous labyrinth of steely suspects and untouchable academics, Decker, McAdams, and Rina race to protect their community from a psychopathic killer still in the area—and on the hunt for a fresh victim.
As a detective lieutenant with the LAPD, Peter Decker witnessed enough ugliness and chaos for a lifetime. Now he and his spirited wife, Rina Lazarus, are ready to enjoy the quiet beauty of upstate New York, where they can be closer to their four adult children, grandchildren, and their foster son, Gabe.
But working for the Greenbury Police Department isn't as fulfilling as Decker hoped. While Rina has adapted beautifully to their new surroundings, Decker is underwhelmed and frustrated by his new partner, Tyler McAdams, a former Harvard student and young buck with a bad attitude. Just when he thinks he's made a mistake, Decker is called to an actual crime—a possible break-in at the local cemetery.
The call seems like a false alarm until it's discovered that a mausoleum's stunning Tiffany panels have been replaced by forgeries. Soon the case escalates into murder: a co-ed at an exclusive consortium of liberal-arts colleges is brutally slaughtered. Poking into the hallowed halls of academia to find a killer, Decker and McAdams are drawn deep into a web of nasty secrets, cold-case crimes, international intrigue, and ruthless people who kill for sport.
Suddenly Decker's job is anything but boring, and the case might be too much to handle for a sleepy town that hasn't seen a murder for nearly a quarter century. Decker will need to use every bit of his keen mind, his thirty years of experience as a homicide cop, and much-appreciated help from family and old friends to stop a callous killer and uncover a cabal so bizarre that it defies logic.
L.A.P.D. Homicide Detective Peter Decker and his wife Rina Lazarus are back on a case in Hangman—an electrifying new novel of suspense from Faye Kellerman, New York Times bestselling author of Blindman’s Bluff, The Mercedes Coffin, The Burnt House, and many other masterful thrillers. A stunning tale of crime and detection featuring the brutal death of a “party girl” health care worker, a mysterious disappearance, and the chilling return of an all-too-familiar sociopath, Hangman is Kellerman’s 21st bestseller to feature Decker and Lazarus, “Hands down, the most refreshing mystery couple around.” (People)
Throughout his years with the LAPD, Peter Decker has handled a number of tough cases and strange killers. But few of his previous assignments compare to his latest case—the most bizarre of his storied career.
When Hobart Penny is found dead in his apartment, the cops think that his pet cat—an adult female tiger—attacked the reclusive elderly billionaire. But it soon becomes clear that the beast that killed the eccentric inventor is all too human. Digging into the victim's life, Decker and his colleagues, Detectives Marge Dunn and Scott Oliver, discover that Penny was an exceptionally peculiar man with exotic tastes, including kinky sex with call girls.
Following a trail of clues that leads from a wildlife sanctuary in the San Bernardino Mountains to the wild nightlife of Las Vegas, the LAPD detectives are left juggling too many suspects and too few answers. To break open a case involving the two most primal instincts—sex and murder—Decker wrestles with a difficult choice. Should he turn to a man with expert knowledge of both, Chris Donatti, the dangerous man who also happens to be the father of Decker's foster son, Gabriel Whitman, a boy not without his own problems?
As their work and intimate worlds collide, Decker and his wife, Rina, find themselves facing tough questions. It just might be that family crises and work-related responsibilities prove too much for Decker's career. A confluence of ordeals can stress even the most intact of families. And when all these shocking truths comes out, exactly how well will Decker and Rina cope, and survive?
After Ben and Ro find the remains of Katie Doogan, they travel to Berkeley, California, to look into the abduction and murder of Julia Rehnquist and to see if they can discover any clues that link her homicide to that of his sister’s. In California, Ben discovers undeniable patterns used by the killer and starts to home in on his identity. But knowing what he does is not enough to bring a murderer to justice, The man is a government agent, hidden and well-protected, making it that much more difficult for Ben and Ro to find him. But just as the investigation stalls so does Ben’s love life when Ro makes an unforgivable mistake.
Though Ro messed up, she’s convinced deep down Ben still loves her. Now the only way she knows how to prove to him that she still loves him is by continuing to search for the killer—on her own…
Discover what happens in the conclusion of Killing Season, Part 3, as Ben and Ro finally come face to face with the killer.
The crime was called in by Rina Lazarus, and Decker is relieved to discover that she is a calm and intelligent witness. She is also the only one in the sheltered community willing to speak of this unspeakable violation. As Rina tries to steer Decker through the maze of religious laws the two grow closer. But before they get to the bottom of this horrendous crime, revelations come to light that are so shocking that they threaten to come between the hard-nosed cop and the deeply religious woman with whom he has become irrevocably linked.