The snow is
falling on the ancient streets of Rome. And in the heart of the city, under the
Pantheon's great dome, a woman's body lies on the marble floor, carefully
positioned with a gruesome carving on her back....In David Hewson's ingenious
new thriller, this horrific murder hurtles Rome's police force into a collision
with U.S. agentsand a secret that has festered for fifteen years, now
unraveling in the world's most enigmatic city.
When Detective Nic Costa arrives at the scene, he is unprepared for what he finds, or for the ambush that leaves his only witness vanished into the night. The dead woman was American. Within hours, U.S. agents descend with a take-no-prisoners style and a shocking story to tell: the killer has struck before, in monuments all over the world, leaving the same cryptic message carved onto the bodies of the victims.
But one agent, beautiful, blond Emily Deacon, has yet another story to tell Nicabout a stunning act of deception that may lead back to the U.S. government, and her own chilling, personal connection to the killer. Now, as the first murder leads to more grisly slayings and a motley crew of veteran Roman cops jousts with the Americans, Nic is pulled into a woman's harrowing search for the truth a search that will take them both into the mind of a madman, into a shocking conspiracyand into a dark episode in a nation's long-forgotten past.
From its haunting opening to its nerve-shattering climax, The Sacred Cut defies all our expectations, proving once again the unique and compelling genius of David Hewson.
The two plainclothes cops huddled in the doorway of a closed farmacia
in Via del Corso, shivering, teeth chattering, watching Mauro Sandri,
the fat little photographer from Milan, fumble with the two big Nikon
SLRs dangling round his neck. It was five days before Christmas and for
once Rome was enjoying snow, real snow, deep and crisp and even, the
kind you normally only saw on the TV when some surprise blizzard
engulfed those poor miserable bastards living in the north.
It fell from the black sky as a perfect, silky cloud. Thick flakes curled around the gaudy coloured lights of the street decorations in a soft, white embrace. The pavements were already blanketed in a crunchy, shoe-deep covering in spite of the milling crowds who had pounded the Corso's black stones a few hours earlier, searching for last-minute Christmas presents in ...
About the Nic Costa series: The Sacred Cut is Hewson's third mystery to
star Roman detective Nic Costa. The series started with A Season for
the Dead, published in the UK in 2003 and in the USA in 2004. Then
followed The Villa of Mysteries (2004/2005) and The Sacred
The next in the series, The Lizard's Bite was published in the UK in March and will be available in hardcover in the USA this November. Hewson says the story harks back to an earlier standalone mystery he wrote - Lucifer's Shadow (published in the UK in 2001 and in the US in 2005), and includes some of the same characters. Costa takes on a case that, for the first time, takes him beyond the known and comfortable confines of Rome,...
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