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Compelling and graceful...very hard to put down. —Robert B. Parker


A Sacramento attorney commits suicide--and Kat finds a video suggested he'd been blackmailed. But as Kat investigates, she discovers that the extortionist has a charitable streak, ordering victims to make their payments to an organization that helps handicapped kids.


From Publisher's Weekly: In her eighth outing, scrappy Sacramento PI Kat Colorado (Honky Tonk Kat, 1996) exposes embezzlement and extortion at Hope for Kids, a charity that aids crippled and disfigured children. Attorney Richard Carter hires Kat to discover what's troubling his partner, Jim Randolph. Before she has a chance to get started, Randolph commits suicide, and Kat finds a sex video involving him that shouts "blackmail." With clever sleuthing, and her skill at extracting confidences, Kat discovers that the blackmailer usually strikes once, demanding a donation to Hope for Kids. Then Kat uncovers a separate scheme in which an embezzler skims from hefty contributions to Hope, unaware that much of the money comes from the wealthy prey of the wily, enterprising blackmailer. The two villains make for a great setup. The down side is that when Kat questions the blackmail victims, including some of her friends, they crumble like spongecake, eagerly revealing long-held secrets. Readers may identify the baddies early, but the blackmailer's motives are hidden and complex, requiring Kat to use all her cunning to trap him. Despite a plot leaning heavily on coincidence and a penchant for cutesy chapter introductions, Kijewski writes with wit and fine pacing, and Kat remains invigorating company. 18-city author tour. (June)

From The Publisher: Kat Colorado, "one of the toughest and toughest-talking of the new breed of female investigators"(Los Angeles Times), investigates a suicide and discovers a trail of blackmail, betrayal, and blood that ends on her doorstep. When prominent Sacramento attorney James Randolph suddenly commits suicide while under surveillance by Kat, she is stunned by the shocking images that confront her. But Randolph, the victim of a vicious blackmailer, is just the tip of a very dangerous iceberg, and his death has far-reaching consequences in the community. Reporter J.O. Edwards is also intrigued by the suicide; an article he writes sets off a chain reaction, which encourages another of the blackmailer's victims to come forward. By chasing leads, finessing her contracts, and twisting a few arms, Kat - with J.O. on her heels - identifies a pattern, a web of deceit of frightening proportions. As Kat comes closer to her quarry, the blackmailer turns up the heat, resorting to brutal physical violence, threatening Kat, her friends, her family, and everything she holds dear.