Breakneck [NOOK Book]

Overview

A remorseless killer. A string of innocent, clean-cut victims. Detectives M.C. Riggio and Kitt Lundgren must race against a cold-blooded predator who moves at breakneck speed in this heart-pounding thriller from New York Times bestselling author Erica Spindler.


Hot on the heels of their last case, partners Mary Catherine (M.C.) Riggio and Kitt Lundgren, detectives in the police department's Violent Crimes Bureau in industrial, blue-collar Rockford, Illinois, are called out to a...

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Breakneck

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Overview

A remorseless killer. A string of innocent, clean-cut victims. Detectives M.C. Riggio and Kitt Lundgren must race against a cold-blooded predator who moves at breakneck speed in this heart-pounding thriller from New York Times bestselling author Erica Spindler.


Hot on the heels of their last case, partners Mary Catherine (M.C.) Riggio and Kitt Lundgren, detectives in the police department's Violent Crimes Bureau in industrial, blue-collar Rockford, Illinois, are called out to a college student's apartment where a young man with no criminal record, not even a noise complaint from his neighbors, appears to have been murdered in his sleep.


The trail seems cold, until another victim turns up, and then another… each one striking closer to home for M.C. The growing list of seemingly emotionless kills leaves M.C. and Kitt little to follow--like the first victim, all the targets are young adults, kid-next-door types who've never taken a step outside the law. Meanwhile, the case starts to take its toll on M.C.'s personal life, setting her on edge with her partner and putting their hard-earned friendship in jeopardy. As M.C. and Kitt hunt a faceless killer, they are led deep into the cyberuniverse, where no one is who he seems and you never know who's watching. At the heart of this mesmerizing thriller is the relationship between two headstrong women as they struggle to balance their dual roles, to learn to trust, and to walk the fine line between upholding the law--and taking it into their own hands.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Det. Kitt Lundgren and her partner, Mary Catherine Riggio, of the Rockford, Ill., Violent Crimes Bureau pursue a serial killer ripped from Internet urban legend in this unconvincing thriller from bestseller Spindler (Copycat). When Riggio's too-good-to-be-true fiancé is caught in the line of fire, the shooting at first appears to be unrelated to the murder spree of Breakneck, who targets computer-savvy 20-somethings. Of course, the connection is immediately obvious to readers, if not the veteran staff of the VCB. Lundgren's preoccupied with mending her broken marriage while ambling toward career burnout, and Riggio doesn't hesitate to throw out the procedural rulebook, eschewing her police training in a desperate search for the truth. Spindler strays from her comfort zone in tackling the mysterious world of cyber crime. Casting disaffected youth as criminal masterminds doesn't ring true, while descriptions of technology and its applications are painstakingly overexplained. (Jan.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From the Publisher
“Filled with well-developed, multidimensional characters, Spindler's latest boasts fast-paced action and emotional tension…. The intricately woven plot makes this novel a sure winner for readers who like to keep guessing all the way to the end.” – Romantic Times Book Reviews

"The body count rises at a dizzying pace, and Spindler's clean writing style keeps the plot moving along. Plus, the all-female detective team is likable and relatable." —Star Magazine

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429921411
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 1/20/2009
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 37,033
  • File size: 362 KB

Meet the Author

Erica Spindler

New York Times bestselling author Erica Spindler, has written 28 novels, including Last Known Victim, Copycat, Killer Takes All, See Jane Die, Dead Run and Bone Cold. Erica lives just outside New Orleans, Louisiana, with her husband and two sons.


New York Times bestselling author Erica Spindler has written many novels, including Breakneck, Blood Vines, Watch Me Die, Bone Cold, In Silence and Last Known Victim. Her books are published in 25 countries. Raised in Rockford, Illinois, Spindler planned on becoming an artist, and earned visual arts degrees from Delta State University and the University of New Orleans. But one day in 1982, she picked up a romance novel and was immediately hooked. She soon tried to write her own romance, but it was when she leapt from romance to suspense that she found her true calling. Spindler has won the prestigious Daphne du Maurier Award for excellence, the Kiss of Death Award, and has been a three-time RITA Award Finalist. She lives just outside New Orleans, Louisiana, with her husband and two sons.
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Read an Excerpt

Breakneck


By Spindler, Erica

St. Martin's Paperbacks

Copyright © 2010 Spindler, Erica
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780312363918

CHAPTER ONE

ROCKFORD,ILLINOIS

SUNDAY, JANUARY 11, 2009

3:05 A.M.

THE KID’S EYES snapped open. Matt Martin. Twenty-one-year-old computer-hacking loser. It took only a moment for his expression to shift from sleepy confusion to horrified realization: there was a stranger in his bedroom. That stranger held a gun to his head, to the tender place between his eyes, just above the bridge of his nose.

The one called Breakneck smiled grimly. "Hello, son."

The kid went limp with terror. His mouth worked but no sound emerged.

"The gun I’m holding to your head is nothing fancy. An old-fashioned .38 caliber, semiautomatic. Ser viceable at best."

He kept his voice low, tone soothing. "What’s unique about this situation, of course, is the weapon’s proximity to its target, your brain. When I pull the trigger, the bullet will rocket from the chamber and explode out of the barrel and into your head. In response, your brains will explode out the back of your skull."

Breakneck firmed his grip on the weapon. "The sound will be muffled by the fact that the barrel is pressed to its target, the mess contained by the pillow, bedding and mattress."

The bony young man began to shake. The smell of urine stung the air. Unmoved by the kid’s fear, he went on,"I’m going to ask you a few questions. Your life depends on your answers."

The kid’s eyes welled with tears.

"I know who you are and what you do. I want what you stole from me."

"I don’t know what you’re—"

"Where is it?"

"What? I don’t . . . who are y—"

"I’m the guy you shouldn’t have fucked with. I want my information. And I want my money." He increased pressure on the gun; the kid whimpered. "What do you think, son? Do we do this the easy way? Or the messy way?"

"Easy," he whispered.

"You jacked some information. And some money. Five hundred grand."

Recognition flickered in his horrified gaze.

Of course it did. One didn’t forget stumbling onto that kind of money.

Especially a small-time little shit like this one.

"I see we’re on the same page now. Good."

"I didn’t take your money."

"Who did?"

"I don’t know!" His voice rose. "No one!"

His eyes darted back and forth. A clear sign he was lying. Breakneck could almost hear him thinking. Mentally scrambling for a way out, weighing his options: Give him the information? How much—or how little—would keep him alive? Did he dare lie? Struggle? Beg? What were the consequences of each?

All animals responded to predators in the same way, Breakneck knew. They fought for survival. Using whatever means at their disposal. Over the years, he had seen them all.

Some predators, however, were so smart, so skilled, the fight was as pathetic as it was futile.

"I don’t want to hurt you, Matt. But I will. I’m going to count to three and then I’m going to pull the trigger. One," he said softly. "Two . . . thr—"

"Okay, I found it, but I didn’t move it!"

"Who did? A name."

"I don’t know . . . an e-mail address and screen name, that’s all I have. It’s marioman. At Yahoo. Check for yourself . . . on my laptop. I’m Gunner35. My password’s 121288. You can get it all with that. I promise . . . go see. It’s all there."

The kid’s voice rose as he spoke. Breakneck laid a gloved hand over his mouth to quiet him. "You did good, Matt. Real good. Thank you."

He moved quickly, snapping the young man’s neck before he had a clue what was happening. With little more than a gurgle, Matt Martin died.

Excerpted from Breakneck by Erica Spindler.
Copyright © 2008 by Erica Spindler.
Published in 2008 by St. Martin’s Paperbacks.
All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or medium must be secured from the Publisher.



Continues...

Excerpted from Breakneck by Spindler, Erica Copyright © 2010 by Spindler, Erica. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 48 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(21)

4 Star

(16)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 48 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 18, 2009

    Great!

    Another edge-of-your-seat thriller from Spindler. Her writing style is easy yet engaging and the well-paced suspense kept those pages turning. I really loved the two female detectives- very well-balanced and realistic characters. But not so overly drawn that they took away from the crime story itself. The computer-hacking crime was easy to understand, not weighed down by techno-garble or too far-fetched. Plenty of red herrings to keep you on your toes and a breath-taking conclusion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2012

    Alyssa

    This was a great book from begining to end. At the end of each chapter, the author left me in suspence! I couldnt even put the book down

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  • Posted May 1, 2011

    Deadly Rivals

    In this sequel of Copycat, Kitt and M.C. return in this mystery. When Matt Martin is killed, it's up to the detectives to find out why. When it hits close to home for M.C., twice, they try to connect the dots, especially when the FBI is involved. Enthralled into a net of cyberthieves, it's up to Lundgren and Riggio who's in charge of it all. In the middle of winter, it's up to Kitt, who's trying to resuscitate her marriage, and M.C., who's personally involved into this mess, to work together as a team, right to the end. Lots of action-packed chapters to keep you guessing to the very end.

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  • Posted January 18, 2011

    A BIT DISAPPOINTED

    This was a very good book. I am just disappointed that ERica has chosen in her last few books to leave out the romance. I love romantic suspense books. I tolerate mysteries.. so please Erica go back to your original way of writing. Nothing was better than your first ten books.

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  • Posted November 21, 2010

    On the edge of My Seat

    Erica Spindler wrote a great book. I was on the edge of my seat and could not put this book down. Great job with developing the characters and the plot.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2010

    Amazing

    I loved this book. Finished it in two days because I couldnt put it down.

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  • Posted April 12, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Spindler scores again.

    You've heard "I couldn't put it down!" It's true! Fast-moving action, a real page turner. Well developed characters. I look forward to the next book with these female detectives.

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  • Posted February 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Break Neck

    Another good book that kept me reading by Erica. Although I would say this was very good - I think Erica has had better ones! I always pick up Erica's books as soon as they come out - never disappointing - great writer. I would recommend this book as definitely worthwhile reading!

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  • Posted July 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    EXCELLENT!!

    Very suspensful! I just love Ericas books. She cannot write fast enough for me. This book had a surprise ending. Just when you think you have it all planned out she changes it up! Great read. Highly recommended!

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  • Posted April 30, 2009

    Here we go again!

    Erica Spindler has done it again. Written a really good mystery novel that will have you wondering which Riggio "done it" You are flowing back and forth onto the sea of doubt about everyone in the book until the surprise at the end. Thank you once again Erica.

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  • Posted April 23, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    ERICA SPINDLER AT THE TOP OF HER GAME.

    THE DETECTIVE TEAM OF KITT LUNDGEN AND MARY CATHERINE RIGGIO (M.C. FOR SHORT) OF ROCKFORD, ILLINOIS THAT DEBUTED IN COPYCAT HAS A SECOND GO-ROUND WITH ANOTHER SERIAL KILLER, THIS TIME DUBBED "BREAKNECK". THE VICTIMS' ARE ALL COLLEGE AGE AND STRIKE VERY CLOSE TO HOME FOR M.C. THE SUSPENSE STARTS ON PAGE ONE AND CONTIMUES THROUGHOUT. AS USUAL THE KILLER IS AMONG THE CAST OF CHARACTERS, BUT THE BOOK WILL KEEP YOU GUESSING UNTIL THE THRILLING ENDING. THE LAST 50 PAGES ARE LIKE A ROLLER-COASTER PICKING UP SPEED ON THE DEEPEST DROP OF THE RIDE. MS. SPINDLER HAS CREATED THE BEST SET OF PARTNERS IN THE THRILLER GENRE. KITT IS OLDER AND HAS THE MOST EXPERIENCE. M.C. IS YOUNGER AND IS VERY AMBITIOUS. WHAT THEY SHARE IS GREAT CHEMISTRY AND PROFILING SKILLS, EVEN THOUGH THEY DON'T LABEL THEIR INTUITION AS "PROFILING". WHAT THEY SHARE IS A GREAT INTENSITY TO STOP KILLERS AND PROTECT POTENTIAL VICTIMS. THEY FREQUENTLY ARGUE AND SWAP IDEAS AND THIS IS WHEN THEY START TO PUT THE PIECES TOGETHER. WHEN THEY GET A HOLD OF A PIECE OF EVIDENCE THEY ARE LIKE PIT-BULLS. THEY WON'T LET IT GO. THEY ARE SURROUNDED BY A GREAT SET OF CHARACTERS. MS. SPINDLER HAS CREATED THE BEST CURRENT CRIME PARTNER TEAM IN THE THRILLER GENRE. I SINCERELY HOPE THAT SHE REALIZES THAT SHE HAS STRUCK GOLD AND ALL OF HER FUTURE BOOKS FEATURE KITT AND M.C.

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  • Posted April 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Real Thriller

    Excellent writing, interesting read. Couldn't put it down.

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  • Posted March 30, 2009

    Another Great Book from Erica Spindler

    I have loved her books for over a decade and this one was another one to add to my collection. This was so good I read it in one evening, I could not put the book down. My parents read it that fast also.
    Her characters are wonderful and this was a great read!

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  • Posted March 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    BREAK NECK

    I hve enjoyed erica spindler since the first book i picked up. for me this is especially enjoyable with it set here in rockford. i have already passed it along to others. keep it coming erica

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  • Posted March 30, 2009

    I usually know that i will get a good read from Erica Spindler, but, i was so very disappointed in this book,it was dry, boring, and not like her usual keeping me entranced, i just couldnt get a feel for this book.

    I would not recommend this book to anyone, i was highly disappointed in the book, and i felt it lacked real depth, i usually am so intrigued and can lose myself in any book by Erica Spindler, but this one really disappointed me very much. I will still buy her books, as i am hoping that this was just a setback, and hopefully she continues to write suspenseful and intriguing keep me glued to the story pages.

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  • Posted March 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Kept me guessing.

    It was the first book I read from her. I liked it I was suprised by the ending it kept me thinking. Can't wait to read some more of her books

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  • Posted March 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Cant put it down

    I love her books. Once you start reading them you cant put them down. The story pulls you in and doesnt let you go til the end.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2009

    A great whodunnit with a surprise villian!

    Typical Spindler - I couldn't put it down! Great characters, quick moving plot, super mystery!

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  • Posted February 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    BORING

    Unoriginal, Predicatable, book with a scattered storyline and unfeeling characters~Every couple of of chapters someone gets killed and its hard to grasp where the book is headed. Definately not worth the $$ or time-i would reccomend other Erica Spindler books tho like Copycat or anything by Lisa Jackson

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  • Posted November 12, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    An exhilarating thriller

    Rockford, Illinois Police Detective Mary Catherine ¿M.C.¿ Riggio is ecstatic when Dr. Dan Gallo proposes; she accepts, which is a big step for her as she has humongous trust issues that has led to commitment phobia. Meanwhile her Violent Crimes Bureau partner Kitt Lundgren looks forward to traveling to Mexico with her ex-husband, hoping they can reach a reconciliation and a future together.<BR/><BR/>The partners are sent to investigate the death of Matt Martin whose neck was broken. When they arrive they find he was living in luxury well beyond his means and his computer is missing. Matt is a cracker hacker who belongs to a ring of twenty something years old that commit internet crimes. After their engagement party, Dan drives her cousin Tommy home. However when she drives up besides Dan she finds him murdered. MC is determined to work the case and Kitt wants to be there so she delays her Mexican vacation causing a schism with her former spouse. Tommy becomes the next victim, which leads everyone to belie Dan was shot was because of a mistaken identify as Tommy was always the intended victim. Everyone in the Cracker group who brag about their exploits is being eliminated one at a time; leaving anyone close to Tommy like his girlfriend and his brother in danger from a deadly executioner.<BR/><BR/>As the death toll mounts while also remaining personal, MC feels pressured to solve the case that she should have been excluded from since her fiance and her cousin are victims. Most of the Cracker group see what they do as victimless activities and therefor should not be labeled crime; they choose to ignore the consequences of their actions and how it may impact others. Readers obtain a deep look at some tunnel vision IT geniuses envision the physical and cyber worlds as Erica Spindler provides her usual exhilarating thriller.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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