A Novel of Suspense
By William Bernhardt
(Fawcett, Mass Market Paperback, 9780345470164, 480pp.)
Publication Date: January 31, 2006
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Sometimes her eyes seduce. Sometimes they stare straight at the kind of sights most people turn away from. But in the blazing neon and searing sun of Las Vegas, she can’t see the man who is watching her and thinking to himself: She is the one. . . .
From the mountain views beyond the Strip to the dingy dens of forbidden pleasure, Susan Pulaski loves Las Vegas. A woman who wears a gun at her side and her heart on a sleeve, Pulaski is the perfect fit for her city and her job: unraveling the minds of deviant personalities. Until a killer begins decorating Sin City with the horribly disfigured bodies of once beautiful young women. . . . and Pulaski’s own demons go on a binge.
Eight months after her cop husband’s death, her life is spinning out of control–just as her detective colleagues start searching for a serial killer who methodically stalks his female victims and plunges them into an orgy of terror. When a violent incident earns Pulaski a pink slip from the LVPD and a trip to detox, she’s out of the hunt altogether, so she begins to desperately try to regain her job, her reputation, and custody of the niece she’s been raising on her own. It seems hopeless–until Pulaski meets the one person who can lead her into the mind of a madman no one else can understand. Darcy O’Bannon is a twenty-five-year-old autistic savant whose relationship with the world around him is so unusual that it forces Pulaski to view the crimes from a bizarre–but ultimately insightful–perspective.
White-knuckling her way to the center of the case, she becomes the key player in a desperate hunt for a killer who believes he has found divine inspiration in the works of Edgar Allan Poe. But even with the assistance of Darcy’s astonishing skills, Pulaski is in even more danger than she knows. For the man she seeks is watching her, seduced by her frailties and strengths, her beauty and boldness. To finish his masterwork of horror, he needs her.
In a blistering novel that brings together glitz and goth, human weakness and human genius, and a murderous psychopath who is all too chillingly real, master storyteller William Bernhardt has created an unparalleled literary Las Vegas thrill ride that will leave readers breathless until the final, stunning page.
WILLIAM BERNHARDT is the author of many novels, including Primary Justice, Murder One, Criminal Intent, Death Row, and Hate Crime. He has twice won the Oklahoma Book Award for Best Fiction, and in 2000 he was presented the H. Louise Cobb Distinguished Author Award “in recognition of an outstanding body of work in which we understand ourselves and American society at large.” A former trial attorney, Bernhardt has received several awards for his public service. He lives in Tulsa with his wife, Kirsten, and their children, Harry, Alice, and Ralph. Readers can e-mail him at WB@williambernhardt.com or visit his website at www.WilliamBernhardt.com.
Advance praise for Dark Eye
“Murder in Sin City, as investigated by a tough woman cop and her incomparably gifted young associate–Bernhardt and Las Vegas go together like fire and gasoline.”
–STEPHEN COONTS, author of Liars and Thieves
“Showcasing William Bernhardt at the height of his storytelling powers, Dark Eye is a Silence of the Lambs meets Rain Man thriller that will chill you while its two unique and endearing protagonists steal your heart.”
–LISA SCOTTOLINE, author of Killer Smile
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For its 10th anniversary, the festival celebrates those who have dared to stand ‘on the edge,’ risking their careers, and sometimes their lives, to speak out for their art and beliefs. Join us for a wide range of events, including debates, one-on-one conversations, participatory workshops and performances in venues throughout the city. Use the code PEN14 (use PEN2014 for events at The Public Theater) and receive a 20 percent discount on most events. www.worldvoicesfestival.org