The electrifying new thriller from the acclaimed author of DARK HARBOUR
In Hosp's lackluster second novel (after 2005's Dark Harbor), Darius Train and Jack Cassian, a mismatched pair of D.C. detectives, investigate the throat-slashing murder of Washington Post reporter Elizabeth Creay. The fortuitous crime-scene find of a cigarette lighter with a clear fingerprint leads the detectives to local drug dealer Jerome Washington. It's a tidy but far too convenient arrest. The commissioner of police is upset when Train and Cassian move on to a number of other suspects, some of them highly placed among the city's powerful ruling class. The heart of the murder may lie in the history of the American eugenics movement, "the science of controlling the gene pool-improving it, in theory-through selective breeding." The uncovering of long-buried secret experiments at the Virginia Juvenile Institute for the Mentally Defective, a state facility where thousands of people were once sterilized, results in more murders. The denouement is so murky that baffled readers will find themselves scratching their heads in dismay. 6-city author tour. (July) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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Grand Central Publishing
July 04, 2006
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Excerpt from The Betrayed by David Hosp
JACK CASSIAN LEANED FORWARD in the flimsy plastic chair, its aluminum frame creaking with every shift of his weight. His head hung low, his hair falling forward, obscuring an angular, attractive face that somehow retained its youthfulness in spite of all he had seen in his thirty-three years. "I'm not seeing Candy anymore," he said without emotion. "I never really thought it would work out, anyway, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised. She never understood anything about what makes me tick; one in a long list of things that she didn't understand. Like art. And literature. And childproof caps." He was looking down at the yellowing industrial tiles on the floor, and he could sense no movement from the figure sitting at his side. But then, he no longer expected a reaction.
"Guys at the station ask about you," he lied. "Couple of them say they might stop by: Hendrickson and Joe, maybe." He considered for a moment how far he should press the fabrication. "They probably won't, though, in the end. Things are pretty busy, and guys like them hate places like this, y'know " Still no movement.
He cast his mind about for anything else worth saying anything that might make the charade seem more real. "Yeah, you know," he repeated just to fill the void.
Jack sat in silence for another moment or two before he was able to pry his eyes from the cracks in the dirty linoleum and look at the man sitting in the wheelchair beside him. The resemblance between them, which had been acute when they were both much younger, was still there, but atrophy had taken its toll. The cheeks were hollow now, and the shoulders which had once been so broad and strong, thrown back in defiance of the world's injustices were slumped forward, bony and frail under the lint-ridden bathrobe Jack had purchased a year ago. But the change was most evident in the eyes. They had once burned with joy and anger and mischief, a concentration of life that affected everyone and everything within their reach. Now they were empty sockets sucked back into a thin face, the whites turned yellow and lined, like the cracks in the floor of this godforsaken place. Whenever Jack Cassian found the courage to look there into the eyes he had known his entire life his pretense fell apart, and he understood that the man he once knew so well was gone. Above the eyes, the deep purple sickle-shaped scar rested in the divot that marred the man's forehead.
The buzzing of Jack's pager broke the silence. He let it vibrate a few times, still looking at the man next to him, whose blank stare remained unchanged. Finally, he unclipped the tiny device from his belt and looked at the number on the display. Then he returned the pager to its resting place.
He leaned forward, letting his head drop again as he brought his fingers together into a pyramid. "Listen, Jimmy, I'm sorry," he said. "That was the office. I gotta go out on a call." He sighed. "I'd planned to stay longer." He looked up again, and for just a moment the hope crept back into his heart; that lingering, illogical optimism that allows a person to believe, against all medical assurances, that maybe just maybe there might be some flicker of recognition. It was useless, though, and he knew it, in his head if not in his heart.