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Don't Close Your Eyes

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A female detective investigating the deaths of successful women realizes she's the killer's ultimate target.
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Overview

A female detective investigating the deaths of successful women realizes she's the killer's ultimate target.
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Editorial Reviews

BookWire Review
BookWire Review

DON'T CLOSE YOUR EYES
LAWRENCE KELTER, Leisure Books, New York, NY, $6.99 US, paperback,
(322p)
ISBN: 0-8439-5554-6

"Don't Close Your Eyes" begins with a whimper and a bang--two seemingly
unrelated deaths. The first is a teenage girl whose asthma suffocates
her while sleeping. The second is a man shot on the tram that connects
Roosevelt Island to Manhattan. Lying next to the man is the real
puzzle: a woman who might appear to have die
Nelson DeMille
Lawrence Kelter reminds me of an early Robert Ludlum
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780843955545
  • Publisher: Dorchester Publishing Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/1/2005
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 322
  • Product dimensions: 4.12 (w) x 6.74 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author

Lawrence Kelter was born and raised in Brooklyn and lives on Long Island. He often uses Manhattan and Long Island as backdrops for his stories. He has published three novels featuring street savvy NYPD detective, Stephanie Chalice: Don’t Close Your Eyes, Ransom Beach, and The Brain Vault. BookWire Review wrote of the character, “Chalice’s acerbic repartee is like an arsenal of nuclear missiles.” He has also published an international thriller entitled By Executive Order. Early in his writing career, he received support from best selling novelist, Nelson DeMille, who reviewed his work, and actually put pencil to paper to assist in the editing of the novel. DeMille said, “Lawrence Kelter reminds me of an early Robert Ludlum.” His novels are quickly paced, and routinely feature a twist ending. For more information, please visit the author on the world wide web at: lawrencekelter.com.
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Read an Excerpt

Don't Close Your Eyes


By Lawrence Kelter

Dorchester Publishing

Copyright © 2004 Dorchester Publishing
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-8439-5554-6


Chapter One

My name's Chalice, Stephanie Chalice-pronounced Cha-lee-see, but most people don't speak the Italian dialect and hence they say Chal-is. For some reason, they seem to enjoy the association with the spiritual and familiar, but there's really nothing spiritual about me. As soon as the word chalice is mentioned, heads fill with thoughts of the Eucharist, of sacramental wine, the blood of Christ, etc., which is quite a goddamn weight for a young woman to carry around on her shoulders.

One thought leads to the next. Words run together within muddled minds: chalice, cup, vessel-vestal virgin? Do you believe that last one? I get that one from the guys. Why can't they just accept me for what I am: a savvy, young detective in the employ of the New York City Police Department. Oh, and not that I'm bragging, but the fellas say I'm fine. If you don't know what fine means, I'll explain. It means that married men remove their wedding bands at the drop of a hat for the opportunity to-but they're not getting any. I'm not playing that game.

I'm twenty-eight years old and single. I'm not seeing anyone at the moment, but I've definitely got my sights trained on someone.

During the winter months I wear slacks and a blazer-try to cover up as much as possible. The less skin the better, right? Well no, not exactly. It seems that no manner of dress is sufficient to keep my cohorts at bay. The burlap bag scenario was never more appropriate than it is here. Nothing seems to help.

You see NYPD boys are bad boys-they're the worst. It doesn't seem to matter how I cover up. They all come out of the police academy remembering one thing and one thing only: single, attractive female-search and detain, not detain and search, but search and detain. I suppose that's what happens when you give men guns. Dear Lord!

Well it's spring now, not just any spring, but the most delightful one I can remember. The days are dreamy and the nights are dreamier and the winter-weight camouflage just isn't working anymore. Besides which, I am a woman and every once in a while, I enjoy dressing like one. So I'm wearing a suit with a skirt today. The skirt's not terribly short, but that doesn't seem to matter. I can't sit down or cross my legs without redirecting all the energy and attention of the entire squad room in my direction.

No one, I repeat no one, can fathom why I became a cop, why I took my 98.5 grade point average and went to John Jay instead of Harvard or Princeton-why I didn't troll Wall Street bearing my substantial assets in the hopes of reeling in a multimillionaire investment banker, or jet off to Hollywood and try on casting couches for size. Duh.

Men say that women are hard to understand and perhaps that's true, but no one's motives were ever more obvious than mine. You see my father was a cop and I loved him dearly. God rest his soul-twenty-two years on the force and loved every minute of it until diabetes up and ran away with his life.

It's been eighteen months since I made detective and I really think the boys are starting to come around. I'm apolitical, bright and driven. I'm the most determined detective on the squad-won't accept no for an answer and I run down every lead until there's absolutely no place to go.

That's what good police work is really about: hard work, some brains and then more hard work. There aren't many Sherlock Holmes. Genius criminal detectives are few and very far between.

It's Saturday and it's five-twenty in the morning. Yes, the goddamn morning-that's right, I said five-twenty. There's nothing funny about the time of day, or the reason that I've been plucked from the warmth and security of my queen-size sleigh bed. There's nothing quite like a double homicide to start the day. Two DOA's were found on the Roosevelt Island Tram at three something in the morning. One was shot through the back. The other fatality was not as easily explained.

My partner, Gus Lido is half in the bag. Whereas yours truly has taken the time to shower and put on a suit-you remember, the one with the skirt, Gus looks like he slept in his clothes. He's unshaven. His eyes are bloodshot and he's sporting the most incredible pillow-head hairdo.

We got caught behind a granny going cross-town on our way to the tram. By my account, there are more seniors on the streets every day.

The sun was just crowning in the east when we arrived at the crime scene. There was barely any standing room on the tramway platform. The forensics guys were already there and waiting for the okay to proceed, as was the medical examiner. There were dozens of uniformed officers in attendance from the local precincts.

Wendell Johnson, a tram employee, was still there and not looking very well at all. The perp had fled the scene and in the process had almost broken Mr. Johnson's back. The president of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation had gotten a call at home and come over by launch-kudos to him. The Roosevelt Island Tramway was a sanctified gem in an otherwise rusted MTA crown. Other than a small mishap with a construction crane a few years back, the tram's history had been quiet and unremarkable. The RIOC president was looking out for his own.

Lido and I had to push and claw our way through the crowd just to get a look at the DOAs. A cop named Dressen had secured the crime scene and was doing a good job of keeping everyone from trampling on it. "Think there are enough cops here?" I asked him.

Dressen smiled wryly. I like a nice wry smile in the morning. "Jurisdiction was in question," he said, "so everyone responded to make sure their asses were covered. The altercation took place after three AM-try getting a brain-trust on the phone at that hour."

"Really." Lido did a quick head count. There were close to fifty of New York's finest on the platform. "How many do we need?" he asked.

"How many Baldwins do they need in Hollywood?" I replied.

Dressen winked before stepping aside. "Point well taken."

I pulled a pair of latex gloves out of my coat pocket. "Got another pair?" Lido asked.

"Can't you remember anything?" I asked, scolding him playfully.

"Come on Cha-lee-see." I liked the fact that he pronounced my name correctly. "Look at the time."

"Your memory stinks. I thought you were taking that ginkgo biloba stuff."

"I was."

"So what happened?" Lido shrugged. Maybe it was too early.

Anyway, I handed Gus an extra pair of gloves. "You'd make a lousy proctologist." Gus laughed as he pulled them on and snapped the fingers into place. He smiled, not so much at the comment but at the image it must have elicited-penny for your thoughts, Big Guy.

The first victim was a guy named Teddy Balto. The entry and exit wounds suggested that Balto had been popped in the back with what looked to me like a 9mm at close range. Obviously, we were in a tram cabin, not a football field. The bullet had entered the lower back and gone through the heart before exiting out the front of the rib cage.

"The perp knew how to kill a man," Lido commented.

"You're not kidding, fast and precise." I tried to imagine the path of the 9mm after it exited Balto's chest and found it lodged in the steel window seal. Two inches lower and it would have pierced the safety plate-glass and disappeared into the East River. I pointed it out to Dressen and asked him to show it to the forensics boys. "Looks like the perp came up behind the conductor and took him out without warning. Poor guy never knew what happened."

"So why didn't he shoot the lady?" Lido asked.

"Beats me," I replied. No use beating around the bush. "Let's find out."

The other victim was a woman in her late thirties or early forties. She was well dressed, conservative and very tasteful. She was wearing an Escada pantsuit and had an absolutely divine scarf around her neck. I saw the telltale Hermes signature in the corner-exquisite. She wore Monolo Blahnick pumps. My God, I'd never seen a thousand-dollar pair of shoes before. The victim's tennis bag was on the seat. I riffled through it quickly. It contained the requisite racket, warm-up suit, towel and unmentionables.

"There's a tennis club on the island right under the 59th Street Bridge," Dressen volunteered.

I winked at him, "Thanks." He was trying to score some Brownie points.

The female victim's name was Ellen Redner. Her purse and Coach briefcase were on the floor next to her-so much for the robbery motive. She had a New York State driver's license that listed an address on Sutton Place-probably getting a little exercise over on the island before someone decided to put her lights out. There was a membership card for the Roosevelt Island Racquet Club stuck in the outer pouch of her wallet. I'd call over there in a bit to confirm that Ms. Redner had in fact played.

I found legal stationery in her briefcase. Ms. Redner was a partner with Holmes, Stockton and Deveraux, a heavy-hitting law firm I'd heard of with offices on Wall Street.

There were no obvious signs of an attack. In fact, Ellen Redner looked very peaceful in death and it would have taken the medical examiner's practiced eye to determine that she had been murdered, had it not been for the fact that her mouth was stuffed with a rag. A torn scrap of paper had been pushed in with it. The spacing of the lines on the paper was irregular, like the kind that kids use to practice their penmanship. I knew it would happen sooner or later. I knew one day, I'd be investigating an honest to God psychopath and that's exactly what we had. Two underlined words were written in pencil: Look back!

(Continues...)



Excerpted from Don't Close Your Eyes by Lawrence Kelter Copyright © 2004 by Dorchester Publishing. 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 3.5
( 80 )
Rating Distribution

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(30)

4 Star

(17)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(8)

1 Star

(18)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 80 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2011

    GOOD READ

    Good suspense and storyline. Did not like that the book, when opened had no cover page. 616 pages for 99 cents. Did not want to put down. First time to read this author and will get the next book in this series.

    15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2012

    Don't Waste Your Time

    Wow. This book is a disaster. It not only was riddled with inaccuracies (FYI to the author: O negative blood can be given to an A positive person. A little research goes a long way), but the portrayal of the main female character did a disservice to women everywhere. Her character was utterly ridiculus and her attraction to Twain was completely appalling.

    10 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2012

    Good

    A page turner

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2011

    Not a Favorite

    The mystery was good and well developed, but I didn't need to know about her sex life or her fantasies. That was unrealistic and nearly made me stop reading the book. I expected to enjoy this book more based on the reviews, but I'm sorry that I already purchased the next book in the series.

    7 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 18, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    No good

    This book is nothing but soft core porne. Took areally good start to the book then wantd to tell nothing but about her sex life.

    6 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2011

    Excellent murder mystery!!! Can't wait to read more Lawrence Kelter!

    Don't Close Your Eyes is an excellent read... I love Stephanie Chalice! I could not put this book down. there is everything you would want in a suspense thriller; murder, humor, sex! This novel is fast-paced entertainment!! It will keep you on the edge of your seat! I cannot wait to read Ransom Road and Lawrence Kelter's newest novel, The Brain Vault.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2005

    Don't Close Your Eyes

    This wonderful book kept me interested from page one! Its the kind of book that keeps you wanting more. There is murder, humor, love & suspense all rolled up into one. The ending has a wonderful twist to it! There are no 'dull' parts which made it hard to put down once I started reading it. Lawrence Kelter is a new author, Im looking forward to reading more of his future books.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2005

    Perfect 'Weekend at the Shore' Beach Thriller

    Kelter provides a strong female lead, definable characters and a pretty clever plot line to keep the reader interested and involved. The murder scenes are graphic, the dialogue singes like a stun gun and Detective Chalice is clever but flawed in her ability to get beyond her own past. I would expect her or a similar character to show up in Kelter's next book, with the hopes that he will continue to make this a 'series' because Don't Close Your Eyes was absolutely an enjoyable, mystery read!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2005

    Fun Reading

    This book was very interesting from a psychological standpoint and a lot of fun to read. The storyline will keep you turning the pages, wondering what will happen next. I'm looking forward to Lawrence Kelter's next book...

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2012

    The main character is completely unrealistic.

    I can't even finish it because her "leg shows" and other various means of manipulation are so annoying. The only thing you learn about the character is that she thinks about sex nonstop. Ridiculous.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2012

    Love the series.

    Love tge characters. Great read.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2012

    So bad it' s almost funny

    This book is just a disjointed string of plot and character cliches. It's as if the author watched a season of "Criminal Minds" and then tried to slap together a novel incorporating all the episodes. The storyline jumps around with no development or transition, the dialogue goes from unnatural to corny to almost nonsensical, and the book is even riddled with inconsistencies and typos. I can't believe it was actually published.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2012

    Very good

    Not sue where all the supposed rauchy porn scenes were.... musta missed those. Excellent read, nothing explicit, main char is sarcastic sassy and curses, but shes portrayed very well. Great read!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 22, 2012

    Highly recomended

    Stoy keeps you on the edge of your seat. I could not put it down.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 17, 2012

    Highly recommend!

    If you like suspense, murder, mystery, women who are beautiful and sure of themselves, humor, twists and turns, and a little sex thrown in....you must read this book!
    Some reviews have mentioned that Detective Chalice thinks and is "hot" in this book and complain about the sex in it. I found the sex parts just fine and although Chalice is a bit conceited, I found the character well portrayed. The suspense kept me going! I wanted to find out who was killing all the women and couldn't figure it out! Det. Chalice really evolves in subsequent books. (I've read the whole series) She is less into her looks and more likeable. I loved the book and couldn't put it down!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2012

    Disappointed

    This is a decent story, but it was bogged down by the sexual references that were clearly not needed. I read the Brain Vault first & loved it. Decided to get the others. I'm disappointed in this one. I think the story line is very good, but gets a little trashed.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2012

    Great read

    I enjoyed it very much, can't wait to read the next one

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2005

    Don't Close Your Eyes

    I really enjoyed this book. It kept me in suspense the whole time & the ending was a blast! I hope to read more books from this brilliant author.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2012

    Horrible

    This may be the first time I've ever wanted my 99 cents back.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2012

    Horrible.

    This was a horrible book! Ridiculous plot and insulting to women.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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