The Dream of the Broken Horses

The Dream of the Broken Horses

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by William Bayer
     
 

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"One hot summer afternoon a quarter century ago, a wealthy socialite and her young lover, a private-school teacher, were gunned down in a cheap motel room on the outskirts of the Midwestern city of Calista. Now, forensic sketch artist David Weiss has returned to his hometown to cover a routine celebrity murder trial for ABC. For someone who has earned a reputation for… See more details below

Overview

"One hot summer afternoon a quarter century ago, a wealthy socialite and her young lover, a private-school teacher, were gunned down in a cheap motel room on the outskirts of the Midwestern city of Calista. Now, forensic sketch artist David Weiss has returned to his hometown to cover a routine celebrity murder trial for ABC. For someone who has earned a reputation for cracking high-profile cases with his portraits of suspects based on eyewitness accounts, churning out courtoom sketches is merely pedestrian work. But Calista holds other attractions for David. First there are the welcome attentions of CNN reporter Pam Wells. Then there's the notoriously unsolved double murder at the Flamingo Court motel that has haunted him since boyhood." Like his psychoanalyst father before him, David becomes obsessed with one of the Flamingo victims, Barbara Fulraine - who was as fascinating as she was enigmatic - and with the bizarre circle of friends, gangsters, columnists, and lovers who surrounded her. David's father believed that if he could unlock Barbara's troubling, recurring nightmare - which she called "the dream of the broken horses" - his solution would mark a watershed in his career. Now David, armed with old new clippings and police interviews, as well as an extraordinary psychological case study of Mrs. Fulraine recently discovered among his deceased father's effects, seeks to use his highly honed professional skills to reassemble the face of her killer. But with each eyewitness interview and each fresh stroke of his pencil, David finds himself being hurled down a path of ever-darkening mystery, obsession, and dread.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The investigation into a 25-year-old double murder of a wealthy socialite and her young lover is renewed with vigor in this sharp and sexy thriller from Edgar award-winning author Bayer (Peregrine; Switch). When Barbara Fulraine and her lover, Tom Jessup, were gunned down in the cheap Flamingo Court motel in the fictional Midwestern city of Calista, David Weiss was just a young boy. Soon after the homicides, David's father, who is also Barbara's therapist, committed suicide. Now, 25 years later, David is a forensic sketch artist who returns to Calista to cover a celebrity murder trial. While there, he becomes obsessed with the unresolved local scandal of the Flamingo murders, convinced Barbara Fulraine's death was the cause of his family's breakup. He interviews a handful of upper-crust locals as well as residents from the seedier side of town, all of whom seem intent on leaving the past alone. Just as the trail of clues grows cold and David's life is endangered, he comes upon Barbara Fulraine's diary from that time. He begins to unravel the history of the mysterious and erotic woman whose sexual prowess may have gotten her killed. Rough play, a nasty custody battle and a kiddie porn ring are just a few of the sordid highlights in this highly charged tale. Some may find the revelation of the killer's identity anticlimactic, yet still be sufficiently satisfied by this classy and compelling psychoerotic suspense tale. 6-city author tour. (Feb. 5) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Bayer returns from his pseudonymous sabbatical as David Hunt (The Magician's Tale, 1997, etc.) to spin a dizzyingly complex tale of long-unsolved felony.
From the Publisher
Publishers Weekly Sharp and sexy....Highly charged.

The Boston Globe This is a fine book, complex, disturbing....The plotting is meticulous, the writing clear, the characters interesting.

Booklist [Bayer] makes a startling yet satisfying departure....Richly atmospheric.

T. Jefferson Parker
"The Dream Of The Broken Horses is a hypnotic blend of suspense, mystery and revelation. Erotically charged and poetically rendered, it worked its way straight into my own dreams. It's great to read a smart, sexy thriller and this is one I recommend."
David Niall Wilson
"A subtle, erotic thriller with deeply drawn characters and a compelling plot. Highly recommended."

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780743403351
Publisher:
Pocket Star
Publication date:
11/26/2002
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
10.60(w) x 16.60(h) x 3.00(d)

Read an Excerpt

One hot summer afternoon a quarter century ago, a wealthy socialite and her young lover were gunned down in a cheap motel room on the outskirts of the Midwestern city of Calista.

Forensic sketch-artist David Weiss has been haunted by the notoriously unsolved double murder since boyhood. Returning to his hometown to cover a routine murder trial, David instead becomes obsessed, like his psychoanalyst father before him, with one of the victims of that long-ago crime, the beautiful but tragic Barbara Fulraine. David's father believed that if he could unlock Barbara's troubling, recurring nightmare -- "the dream of the broken horses" -- his solution would mark a watershed in his career. But as David seeks to reassemble the face of her killer, he finds that with each stroke of his pencil he is being hurled down a path of ever-darkening mystery, obsession, and dread.

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