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Jack Quarry may have retired from being a hitman after he offed The Broker, but he's not out of the killing game yet. There's money to be made, and instead of fulfilling contracts, he's got a way to track down victims before they can be killed and offer them a way to stay alive.
After tracking an antique dealer — who moonlights as a hitman on a surveillance mission — to the small town of Stockwell, Missouri, Quarry realizes the plan is to murder Roger Vale, the owner of a local dance school. Vale was the lead suspect in the disappearance of Candy Stockwell, heiress to the town's wealthiest family and aspiring beauty queen.
Quarry dispatches the antique dealer and his partner, an assassin known for torturing his targets. Whoever put out the contract on Vale didn't just want him dead, but they wanted him to suffer as well. Until the person paying for the contract is handled, Quarry's client will never be safe.
Quarry's investigation into the disappearance of Candy Stockwell takes him to the sordid side of the beauty pageant scene and makes him realize that everyone in Stockwell is not as they seem.
Max Allan Collins (The Road to Perdition) hits hard with the latest installment of his Quarry series. The former hitman is as lethal as ever and eliminates his threats with cool efficiency. The dry wit and action throughout makes for an entertaining read and leaves you wanting more.