Information about the author. See also www.lauralippman.com
Tess Monaghan has finally made the move and hung out her shingle as a p.i.-for-hire, complete with an office in Butchers Hill. Maybe it’s not the best address in Baltimore, but you gotta start somewhere, and Tess’s greyhound Esskay has no trouble taking marathon naps anywhere there’s a roof. Then in walks Luther Beale, the notorious vigilante who five years ago shot a boy for vandalizing his car. Just out of prison, he says he wants to make reparations to the kids who witnessed his crime, so he needs Tess to find them. But once she starts snooping, the witnesses start dying. Is the “Butcher of Butchers Hill” at it again? Like it or not, Tess is embroiled in a case that encompasses the powers that-be, a heartless system that has destroyed the lives of children, and a nasty trail of money and lies leading all the way back to Butchers Hill.
Thirty years ago two sisters disappeared from a shopping mall. Their bodies were never found and those familiar with the case have always been tortured by these questions: How do you kidnap two girls? Who’or what’could have lured the two sisters away from a busy mall on a Saturday afternoon without leaving behind a single clue or witness?
Now a clearly disoriented woman involved in a rush-hour hit-and-run claims to be the younger of the long-gone Bethany sisters. But her involuntary admission and subsequent attempt to stonewall investigators only deepens the mystery. Where has she been, why has she waited so long to come forward? Could her abductor truly be a beloved Baltimore cop? There isn’t a shred of evidence to support her story, and every lead she gives the police seems to be another dead-end’a dying, incoherent man, a razed house, a missing grave, and a family that disintegrated long ago, torn apart not only by the crime but by the fissures the tragedy revealed…[more]
Edgar Award-winner Laura Lippman is developing a reputation as one of the most exciting new detective fiction authors in years. Now she delivers her most suspenseful novel yet, and places Baltimore’s Tess Monaghan…In Big Trouble.
First as a reporter and then as a p.i., Tess Monaghan has learned how to survive and thrive on the streets of Baltimore. But a new case will force her to confront her own past, and a man she loved and lost. It starts when she gets a newspaper photograph of her old boyfriend with a tantalizing shard of headline attached: In Big Trouble. The answers lie far from Baltimore, deep in a world of good-time music, old-fashioned ambiiton, and rich people’s games. For Tess must find out what happened to a man she thought she knew, to a woman who may have changed him forever, and to the victims of a killer who dances to a different—and deadly—drummer.
On a July afternoon two little girls, banished from a birthday party, take a wrong turn onto an unfamiliar Baltimore street—and encounter an abandoned stroller with a baby inside it. Dutiful Alice Manning and unpredictable Ronnie Fuller only want to be helpful, to be good. People like children who are good, Alice thinks. But whatever the girls’ real intentions, things go horribly awry and three families are destroyed.
Seven years later Alice and Ronnie are heading home again—only separately this time, their fragile bond long shattered, their secrets still closely kept. Advised to avoid each other, they enter a world where they essentially have no past. In exchange, they are promised a fresh start, the chance to mold their own future.
That promise is broken when a child disappears, under disturbingly similar circumstances. And the adults in Alice’s…[more]
As a practiced reporter until her newspaper went to that great pressroom in the sky, P.I. Tess Monaghan knows and loves every inch of her native Baltimore, even the parts being slobbered on by the sad-sack greyhound she’s minding for her uncle. It’s a quirky city where baseball reigns, but lately homicide seems to be the second most popular local sport. Business tycoon “Wink” Wynkowski is trying to change all that by bringing pro basketball back to town, and everybody’s rooting fro him—until a devastating, muckraking expose of his lurid past appears on the front page of the Baltimore Beacon-Light. It’s a surprise even to the Blight’s editors, who thought they’d killed the piece. Instead, the piece killed Wink—who’s found in his garage with the car running.
Now the Blight wants to nail the unknown computer hacker who planted the lethal story, and the assignment is right up…[more]
Eliza Benedict cherishes her peaceful, ordinary suburban life with her successful husband and children, thirteen-year-old Iso and eight-year-old Albie. But her tranquillity is shattered when she receives a letter from the last person she ever expectsor wantsto hear from: Walter Bowman. There was your photo, in a magazine. Of course, you are older now. Still, I’d know you anywhere.
In the summer of 1985, when she was fifteen, Eliza was kidnapped by Walter and held hostage for almost six weeks. He had killed at least one girl and Eliza always suspected he had other victims as well. Now on death row in Virginia for the rape and murder of his final victim, Walter seems to be making a heartfelt act of contrition as his execution nears. Though Eliza wants nothing to do with him, she’s never forgotten that Walter was most unpredictable when ignored. Desperate to shelter her children from…[more]
The winner of every major literary award in crime fiction, Laura Lippman brings back her complex and vulnerably human Baltimore P.I., Tess Monaghan, in a tense, expertly spun tale of a family torn asunder by forces it can barely comprehend.
Mark Rubin’s family is missing—and the police can’t do a thing because all the evidence indicates that his wife left willingly. So the successful furrier turns to Tess Monaghan, hoping she can help him find his wife and three children. Tess doesn’t know quite what to make of Rubin, a wealthy Orthodox Jew who refuses to shake her hand and doles out vitally important information in grudging dribs and drabs. According to her client, he and his beautiful wife, Natalie, had a flawless, happy marriage. Yet one day, without any warning or explanation, Natalie gathered up their children and vanished.
Tapping into a network of fellow investigators spread across the country, Tess is soon able to locate the runaway wife…[more]
No good deed goes unpunished…
Working as a consultant for a Baltimore newspaper, p.i. Tess Monaghan seems far removed from the unsolved slaying of a young federal prosecutor—until her well-meaning boyfriend, Crow, brings a street kid into their lives, a juvenile con artist who doesn’t even realize he holds an important key to the sensational homicide. But Tess’s ethical decision to protect the boy’s identity no matter what could have dire consequences—especially when one of his friends is murdered in what appears to be a case of mistaken identity.
With federal agents threatening her with felony charges—and a killer threatening far worse—Tess couldn’t deliver the kid to investigators even if she wanted to once Crow goes into hiding with his young protégé. So her only recourse is to get to the heart of the sordid and deadly affair while they’re all still free…and still breathing.
Josie, Perri, and Kat have been inseparable best friends since third grade—the athlete, the brilliant, acerbic drama queen, and the popular beauty with a heart that is open to all around her. They live in an affluent suburb of Baltimore and enjoy privileges many teenagers are denied. But on the final day of school one of them brings a gun with her. And when the police break down the door of the high school girls’ bathroom, locked from the inside, they find two of the friends wounded, one of them critically—and the third girl is dead.
From one of the most acclaimed authors of crime fiction writing today comes a novel breathtaking in its emotional depth—a riveting, powerful, provocative, and consistently surprising tale of secrets, friendship, and betrayal that brilliantly illuminates a dark and chilling event with startling clarity and unique empathy.
In hot legal water—and court-ordered therapy—for having assaulted a potential child molester, Tess Monaghan is more than ready for a distraction. So she agrees to look into a series of unsolved homicides that date back over the past six years despite the fact that the assignment originates in part from a most troubling source: wealthy Baltimore benefactor Luisa O’Neal, who was both instrumental in launching Tess’s present career and intimately connected with the murder of Tess’s former boyfriend.
There are other troubling aspects as well. Apart from the suspicion that each death was the result of domestic violence, nothing else seems to connect them, Five lives—those of four women and one man—were destroyed by fire, gunshot, and hit-and-run, and all five cases have gone ice cold. Though Luisa’s nonprofit organization hires Tess simply to review old police documents for inconsistencies and investigative blunders, curiosity is soon leading the P.I. off the paper trail. …[more]
Until her paper, the Baltimore Star, crashed and burned, Tess Monaghan was a damn good reporter who knew her hometown intimately—from historic Fort McHenry to the crumbling projects of Cherry Hill. Now gainfully unemployed at twenty-nine, she’s willing to take any freelance job to pay the rent—including a bit of unorthodox snooping for her rowing buddy, Darryl “Rock” Paxton.
In a city where someone is murdered almost everyday, attorney Michael Abramowitz’s death should be just another statistic. But the slain lawyer’s notoriety—and his noontime trysts with Rock’s fiancee—make the case front page news…and points to Rock as the likely murderer. But trying to prove her friend’s innocence couls prove costly to Tess—and add her name to that infamous ever-growing list.