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The day starts like any other in L.A. The sun burns hot as the Santa Ana winds blow ash from mountain fires to coat the glittering city. But for private investigator Joe Pike, the city will never be the same again. His ex-lover, Karen Garcia, is dead, brutally murdered with a gun shot to the head.
Now Karen’s father calls on Pike and his partner, Elvis Cole, to keep an eye on the LAPD as they search for his daughter’s killer—because in the City of Angels, everyone has something to hide. But what starts as routine turns into a deadly game of cat-and-mouse. For a dark web of conspiracy threatens to destroy Pike and Cole’s twelve-year friendship—if not their lives.
When Ellen Lang’s husband disappears with their son, she hires Elvis Cole to track him down. A quiet and seemingly submissive wife, Ellen can’t even write a check without him. All she wants is to get him and her son back—no questions asked.
The search for Ellen’s errant husband leads Elvis into the seamier side of Hollywood. He soon learns that Mort Lang is a down-on-his-luck talent agent who associates with a schlocky movie producer, and the last place he was spotted was at a party thrown by a famous and very well-connected ex-Matador. But no one has seen him since—including his B-movie girlfriend.
At the same time the police find Mort in his parked car with four gunshots in his chest—and no kid in sight—Ellen disappears. Now nothing is what it seems, and the heat is on. It’s up to Elvis Cole and his partner Joe Pike to find the connection between sleazy Hollywood players and an ex-Matador.
Joe Pike—the ex-cop, ex-Marine, exmercenary from Robert Crais’s superb PI Elvis Cole novels—headlines the explosive action of this page-turning New York Times bestseller.
A wild-living young heiress slams into trouble in the L.A. night—the kind of trouble even her money can’t shut down. After her Aston Martin collides with a mysterious car, Larkin Conner Barkley attempts to help the accident victims—and becomes the sole witness in a federal investigation. Whisking her out of her Beverly Hills world is Joe Pike, hired to shield Larkin Barkley from a relentless team of killers. But when a chain of lies and betrayals tightens around them, Pike drops off the grid and follows his own rules for survival: strike fast, hit hard, hunt down the hunters….
When Nita Morales hires Elvis Cole to find her missing adult daughter, she isn’t afraid, even though she’s gotten a phone call asking for ransom. She knows it’s a fake, that her daughter is off with the guy Nita will only call “that boy”, and that they need money: “Even smart girls do stupid things when they think a boy loves them.”
But she is wrong. The girl and her boyfriend have been taken by bajadores—bandits who prey on other bandits, border professionals who prey not only on innocent victims, but on each other. They steal drugs, guns, and people—buying and selling victims like commodities, and killing the ones they can’t get a price for.
Cole and Pike find the spot where they were taken. There are tire tracks, bullet casings, and bloodstains. They know things look as bad as possible. …[more]
Elvis Cole is back on his own turf in Los Angeles, and embroiled in a controversial high-profile murder case. A wealthy restaurateur is accused of murdering his wife, and his hot-shot defense attorney hires Elvis to find proof that police detective Angela Rossi fooled around with the evidence.
Rossi had been cleared of an earlier charge of planting evidence to convict a counterfeiter, but her career was damaged and she’s rumored to be willing to do anything to get it back on track—even if it means framing an innocent man. Yet as Elvis investigates Rossi for the defense team, he begins to be more suspicious of the media-loving lawyers than the cops. As the investigation continues, Elvis is visited by Lucy Chenier, the Louisiana lawyer he’d met several months ago. Lucy is in Los Angeles for a business trip, and as she and Elvis spend more time together, their mutual attraction grows. As the fireworks ignite, Elvis and Lucy are drawn deeper into the intrigue and dangers surrounding the case of the missing woman.
When Frank Meyer and his family are executed in their home, the police begin investigating the secret life they’re sure Meyer had. Joe Pike’s on a hunt of his own: to clear his friend’s name, and to punish the people who murdered him. What starts out as a simple trail gets twisted fast by old grudges, double crosses, blood vengeance, and a crime so terrible even Pike and his partner Elvis Cole have no way to measure it.
Los Angeles, 3:58 a.m.: Elvis Cole receives the phone call he’s been waiting for since childhood. Responding to a gunshot, the LAPD has found an injured man in an alleyway. He has told the officer on the scene that he is looking for his son, Elvis Cole. Minutes later, the man is dead.
Haunted throughout his life by a lack of knowledge about his father, Elvis turns to the one person who can help him navigate the minefield of his past— his longtime partner and confidant, Joe Pike. Together with hard-edged LAPD detective, Carol Starkey, they launch a feverish search for the dead man’s identity—even as Elvis struggles between wanting to believe he’s found his father at last and allowing his suspicions to hold him back. With each long-buried clue they unearth, a frightening picture begins to emerge about who the dead man might have been and the terrible secret he’s been guarding. …[more]
As the Los Angeles Times said, Robert Crais is “a crime writer operating at the top of his game.” His complex heroes and heroines, his mastery of noir atmosphere, and his brilliant, taut plots have catapulted him into the front rank of a new breed of thriller writers. Hostage proves his earlier success was no fluke. It’s an unstoppable read.An ex-con with delusions of grandeur and his tagalong brother unwittingly team up with a psychopath one wrong word away from meltdown. When their late afternoon joyride turns into a random act of violence, they take a family hostage in the affluent bedroom community of Bristo Camino. Enter Chief of Police Jeff Talley, a stressed-out former LAPD SWAT negotiator who is hiding from his past. Plunged back into the high-pressure world that he desperately wants to forget, Talley soon learns that his nightmare has only begun.
The hostages are not who they seem, and the home contains secrets that even L.A.’s most lethal and volatile crime lord,…[more]
When fifteen-year-old Teri Hewitt pleads with Elvis to find the father who abandoned her and her two younger siblings, his first reaction is to turn the case over to the California department of social services. But when he sees that Teri has the lives and care of her little family well in hand, he decides to take the job, asking Joe Pike to help him keep an eye on the kids. The missing dad, Clark Hewitt, is an unemployed printer whose personal history is hard to pin down; as Elvis investigates, the image of Hewitt that emerges indicates a chronically unemployed drug addict who slums through the criminal world, not a bona fide printer but a master counterfeiter.
The clues soon send Elvis to Hewitt’s home town, Seattle, where Elvis runs afoul of both the newly emerging Russian Mafia and U.S. Federal Marshals as he discovers more about the elusive deadbeat dad. In the meantime, Lucy Chenier comes to L.A. to…[more]
Jennifer Sheridan hires Elvis Cole and Joe Pike because she believes that her fiancé, a decorated LA cop in an elite plainclothes unit, is in trouble. The two are soon caught up in a world of South Central gangs, corrupt cops and conspiracies of silence. It is not long before every cop in LA is gunning for Elvis and Joe, now accused of murder.
Hollywood’s newest wunderkind is Peter Alan Nelson, the brilliant, erratic director known as the King of Adventure. His films make billions, but his manners make enemies. What the boy king wants, he gets, and what Nelson wants is for Elvis to comb the country for the airhead wife and infant child the film-school flunkout dumped en route to becoming the third biggest filmmaker in America. It’s the kind of case Cole can handle in his sleep—until it turns out to be a nightmare. For when Cole finds Nelson’s wife in a small Conneticut town, she’s nothing like what he expects. The lady has some unwanted—and very nasty—mob connections, which means Elvis could be opening the East Coast branch of his P.I. office…at the bottom of the Hudson River.