When 21-year-old NYU student Jeff Converse is convicted of a brutal rape and murder that he did not commit, his nightmare has just begun. Jeff is just the latest innocent man to be made a target of the society that controls the underground hell called the Manhattan Hunt Club.
"Story good, narrator ruins it"
Peter Balsam has come to this sleepy desert town to teach its youth, and finds a mystery of mounting horror. Something is happening to the young girls of St. Francis Xavier High School - something evil.In bloodlet and terror a suicide contagion has swept the town...while a dark order of its holy men enacts a secret medieval ritual. Is hysteria manipulating these innocent children into violent self-destruction? Or has a supernatural force, a 13th-century madness, returned to Punish the Sinners?
When legendary Washington Post reporter Mary Keegan is found murdered, homicide detectives Frank Kearney and Jose Phelps pull up the file on another open case. There as here, the victim was a female who had been hacked to death in a public park. And there is one other link: each was missing a little finger, a grisly souvenir - perhaps the calling card of a serial killer. When, a week later, a third woman is found in similar circumstances, they're sure of it.
Homicide detectives Frank Kearney and José Phelps have been members of the force for 25 years, partners from the start. They're smart cops - smart enough to know they've been played for patsies when the O'Brien murder lands in their laps. This is payback time for two cops who've been a little too brash, a little too independent.
But what appears to be a motiveless drive-by in a city with one of the nation's highest homicide rates soon turns into a dirtier, far more complex case.