To be published Jan 3, 2017 by Dutton
A young woman is found strangled in the stairwell of a college library, only her sneakers missing. With no physical evidence, no signs of sexual assault, and no witnesses, all the police have to go on are the three men who were in the library with her: her boyfriend and two campus security guards . . . all of whom have secrets, none of whom can be proven guilty.
Five years later, ex-FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his wife, former police officer Rainie Conner, agree to consult on the still-unsolved case, delving into deep background to comb for any clue that will lead to the woman’s murderer. But with no leads and the case colder than the body, will they be able to build a case against one of the three suspects, or is there a fourth man out there? And if the killer has eluded the police this long, how far will he go to ensure justice is never served?
With Gardner’s singular ability to delve into the minds of criminals and law enforcement alike, The 4th Man is a shocking look at the reasons for taking a life . . . and just how far profilers need to go to learn them.
Detective Sergent D D Warren is back in this intriguing, no frills short story by Lisa Gardner. This time D D is working a ten year old cold case and she’s joined by FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner/wife Rainie Connor. The victim, college student Jaylin Banks, was last seen studying by herself in the computer lab at the campus library. According to her boyfriend, James Duchovny, a local thug who was known for hard partying and violence toward women, he was with her at the library but got tired of waiting, left and arranged to meet her at a local bar when she finished. A short time later, she was found dead in a back stairwell of the library.
I have to say, when I requested this on Netgalley, I didn’t realize it was a short story. I saw it was a new release by one of my very favorite authors and hit request. It really doesn’t matter what Lisa writes, I’ll read it. I have read EVERY book she’s written to date and I can’t say that about any other author out there! So for D D Warren to be working with my old favorite, profiler Pierce Quincey, well that’s just a real treat. And in this instance, the blurb above is accurate and telling. There are several suspects, suspicious timelines , no evidence left at the scene, and a contained, secure murder location as everyone entering the library had to do so with an ID. As Pierce Quincy puts it…“this is the classic closed-room murder.” In my opinion, no one writes about crime and law enforcement like Lisa Gardner and this short story proves it. Not only is this a mysterious ‘whodunit,’ it’s a ‘whydunit’ and I didn’t have either figured out!
If you love mysteries and crime thrillers and haven’t yet read Lisa Gardner, you really are missing out on fantastic writing, intricate plots, and characters you’ll love. If you’re hesitant about starting a new series, I should note that although I’ve read all her books, I didn’t always read them in order as far as the series go and this worked out fine for me. This short story will be released Jan 3, 2017 and is a prelude to her upcoming full length novel Right Behind You, featuring Pierce Quincy and Rainie Connor as they travel to the wilds of Oregon to catch a killer.