Excerpt from Certain Prey by John Sandford, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Certain Prey

by John Sandford

Certain Prey
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    May 1999, 339 pages
    Paperback:
    Mar 2000, 368 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


The brothers had him on his feet and fully conscious by the time Rinker came down, carrying her aluminum baseball bat; or rather, T-ball bat, which had a better swing-weight for a small woman.

"I'm gonna sue you fuckers for every fuckin' dime you got," Dale-Something said, sputtering blood through his split lip. "My fuckin' lawyer is doin' the money-dance right now, you fucks . . ."

"Fuck you, you ain't doing shit," Ron said. "You raped this little girl."

"What do you want, Clara?" Ernie asked. He was standing behind Dale with his arms under Dale's armpits, his hands locked behind Dale's neck. "You wanna arm or a leg?"

Rinker was standing directly in front of Dale-Something, who glowered at her: "I'm gonna . . ." he started.

Rinker interrupted: "Fuck legs," she said. She whipped the bat up, and then straight back down on the crown of Dale-Something's head.

The impact sounded like a fat man stepping on an English walnut. Ernie, startled, lost his death grip and Dale-Something slipped to the floor like a two-hundred-pound blob of Jell-O.

"Holy shit," Ron said, and crossed himself.

Ernie prodded Dale-Something with the toe of his desert boot, and Dale blew a bubble of blood. "He ain't dead," Ernie said.

Rinker's bat came up, and she hit Dale again, this time in the mastoid process behind the left ear. She hit him hard; her step-dad used to make her chop wood for the furnace, and her swing had some weight and snap behind it. "That ought to do it," she said.

Ernie nodded and said, "Yup." Then they all looked at each other in the light of the single bare bulb, and Ron said to Rinker, "Some heavy shit, Clara. How do you feel about this?"

Clara looked at Dale-Something's body, the little ring of black blood around his fat lips, and said, "He was a piece of garbage."

"You don't feel nothin'?" Ernie asked.

"Nothin'." Her lips were set in a thin, grim line.

After a minute, Ron looked up the narrow wooden stairs and said, "Gonna be a load 'n' a half getting his ass outa the basement."

"You got that right," Ernie said, adding, philosophically, "I coulda told him there ain't no free pussy."

Dale-Something went into the Mississippi and his truck was parked across the river in Granite City, from which spot it disappeared in two days. Nobody ever asked about Dale, and Rinker went back to dancing. A few weeks later, Ernie asked her to sit with an older guy who came in for a beer. Rinker cocked her head and Ernie said, "No, it's okay. You don't have to do nothin'."

So she got a longneck Bud and went to sit with the guy, who said he was Ernie's aunt's husband's brother. He knew about Dale-Something. "You feeling bad about it yet?"

"Nope. I'm a little pissed that Ernie told you about it, though," Rinker said, taking a hit on the Budweiser.

The older man smiled. He had very strong, white teeth to go with his black eyes and almost-feminine long lashes. Rinker had the sudden feeling that he might show a girl a pretty good time, although he must be over forty. "You ever shoot a gun?" he asked.

That's how Rinker became a hit lady. She wasn't spectacular, like the Jackal or one of those movie killers. She just took care of business, quietly and efficiently, using a variety of silenced pistols, mostly .22s. Careful, close-range killings became a trademark.

Rinker had never thought of herself as stupid, just as someone who hadn't yet had her chance. When the money from the killings started coming in, she knew that she didn't know how to handle it. So she went to the Intercontinental College of Business in the mornings, and took courses in bookkeeping and small business. When she was twenty, getting a little old for dancing nude, she got a job with the Mafia guy, working in a liquor warehouse. And when she was twenty-four, and knew a bit about the business, she bought a bar of her own in downtown Wichita, Kansas, and renamed it the Rink.

Reprinted from Certain Prey by John Sandford by permission of G. P. Putnam's Sons, a member of Penguin Putnam Inc. Copyright 1999 by John Sandford.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Romanovs
    The Romanovs
    by Simon Sebag Montefiore
    The Romanovs chronicles the reigns of the 20 individuals who were considered members of that dynasty...
  • Book Jacket: Barkskins
    Barkskins
    by Annie Proulx
    Barkskins, by Annie Proulx, is not a book to read quickly. After a month of slow reading, I ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Marriage of Opposites
    by Alice Hoffman
    Alice Hoffman's latest work, The Marriage of Opposites, is a historical fiction novel focusing on ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Secret Language of Stones
    by M. J. Rose

    "A fantastic historical tale of war, love, loss and intrigue."
    – Melanie Benjamin

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    All Is Not Forgotten
    by Wendy Walker

    This is fast-paced psychological suspense/thriller at it's very best.

    Read Member Reviews

Members review books pre-publication. Read their opinions in First Impressions

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
The Fair Fight
by Anna Freeman

A page-turning novel set in the world of 18th century female pugilists.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Summer Stunner
Summer Giveaway

Win 5 books, each week in July!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

W M T N, W C F All

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

BookBrowse Summer Giveaway

We're giving away
5 books every
week in July!