Killer Ambition

Killer Ambition

4.1 20
by Marcia Clark
     
 

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Los Angeles D.A. Rachel Knight faces down the murderously ambitious side of Hollywood in Marcia Clark's newest thriller.

When the daughter of a billionaire Hollywood director is found murdered after what appears to be a kidnapping gone wrong, Los Angeles Special Trials prosecutor Rachel Knight and Detective Bailey Keller find themselves at the epicenter of

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Overview

Los Angeles D.A. Rachel Knight faces down the murderously ambitious side of Hollywood in Marcia Clark's newest thriller.

When the daughter of a billionaire Hollywood director is found murdered after what appears to be a kidnapping gone wrong, Los Angeles Special Trials prosecutor Rachel Knight and Detective Bailey Keller find themselves at the epicenter of a combustible and high-profile court case. Then a prime suspect is revealed to be one of Hollywood's most popular and powerful talent managers—and best friend to the victim's father. With the director vouching for the manager's innocence, the Hollywood media machine commences an all-out war designed to discredit both Rachel and her case.

Killer Ambition is at once a thrilling ride through the darker side of Tinseltown and a stunning courtroom drama with the brilliant insider's perspective that Marcia Clark is uniquely qualified to give.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Rachel Knight finds her professional future on the line in former prosecutor Clark’s suspenseful and gripping third legal thriller featuring the L.A. deputy DA (after 2012’s Guilt by Degrees), the best yet in the series. Teenager Hayley Antonovich has disappeared, and her father, Russell, a blockbuster Hollywood producer, alerts the authorities only after he’s paid the million ransom without getting his child back. Hoping that Hayley can be found alive, Knight and her allies in the LAPD feverishly comb the ransom drop for clues. News that Hayley had been dating 19-year-old Brian Shandling makes the latter an obvious person of interest, but before he can be located, Hayley is found stabbed to death. Knight and her team believe they have identified the killer, but she must use every trick in her trial lawyer’s arsenal to have a hope of prevailing at trial. Clark’s own expertise enables her to realistically portray the drama and vicissitudes of a criminal prosecution. Agent: Dan Conaway, Writer’s House. (June)
Michele Leber
"Legal thrillers don't get much better than this.... Boasting a feisty protagonist, a winning supporting cast, and steadily escalating courtroom drama, KILLER AMBITION finds Clark at the top of her game."
Paula L. Woods
"A refreshing and suspenseful portrayal of high-stakes trials, criminal lawyers on both sides of the aisle and the strategies behind their every move.... Rachel and her posse of girlfriends, colleagues and their love interests are engaging enough to hope for their continued growth and success in investigations that are equal to Rachel, and author Clark's, many and formidable talents in the courtroom."
John Valeri
"KILLER AMBITION may prove to be Marcia Clark's grand triumph. Both a criminally entertaining read and an intimately informed expose of celebrity and crime, it's also the best entry yet in a young but exceptionally strong series. Readers will be left entirely exhilarated - and understandably impatient for the continued trials and tribulations of Rachel Knight, who is one of the most compelling characters to come along in recent years."
Josh Emmons
"Builds real drama out of its tabloid crime and makes Knight a likeable crusader for truth in Tinseltown."
Oline H. Cogdill
"Clark's storytelling skills take another leap with the impressive KILLER AMBITION.... [She] again proves she knows her way around a courtroom."
From the Publisher
"A refreshing and suspenseful portrayal of high-stakes trials, criminal lawyers on both sides of the aisle and the strategies behind their every move.... Rachel and her posse of girlfriends, colleagues and their love interests are engaging enough to hope for their continued growth and success in investigations that are equal to Rachel, and author Clark's, many and formidable talents in the courtroom."—Paula L. Woods, Los Angeles Times"

Suspenseful and gripping.... the best yet in the series. Clark's own expertise enables her to realistically portray the drama and vicissitudes of a criminal prosecution."—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)"

Legal thrillers don't get much better than this.... Boasting a feisty protagonist, a winning supporting cast, and steadily escalating courtroom drama, KILLER AMBITION finds Clark at the top of her game."—Michele Leber, Booklist (Starred Review)

"KILLER AMBITION may prove to be Marcia Clark's grand triumph. Both a criminally entertaining read and an intimately informed expose of celebrity and crime, it's also the best entry yet in a young but exceptionally strong series. Readers will be left entirely exhilarated - and understandably impatient for the continued trials and tribulations of Rachel Knight, who is one of the most compelling characters to come along in recent years."—John Valeri, examiner.com"

Builds real drama out of its tabloid crime and makes Knight a likeable crusader for truth in Tinseltown."—Josh Emmons, People (3/4 stars)"

Clark's storytelling skills take another leap with the impressive KILLER AMBITION.... [She] again proves she knows her way around a courtroom."—Oline H. Cogdill, South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Kirkus Reviews
An amateur kidnapping suddenly turned lethal poses a third case for Deputy District Attorney Rachel Knight, of LA's Special Crimes Unit (Guilt by Degrees, 2012, etc.). It's obvious from the get-go who snatched megabucks Hollywood producer Russell Antonovich's teenage daughter Hayley. All the evidence leads straight to her boyfriend, Brian Shandling. Pleasing complications follow anyway, though they're not so pleasing for Rachel or her friend Bailey Keller, the robbery/homicide detective who lands the case when Antonovich pays the $1 million ransom and his daughter's not returned. Item: Brian Shandling doesn't exist; the boyfriend stole his identity from a long-dead infant. Item: Hayley was almost certainly in on her own kidnapping. Item: Both Hayley and Brian have paid the ultimate price for their little plot, stabbed to death miles from the ransom drop-off point, presumably by someone who got wind of their scheme and stepped in to rewrite the rules. Doing her best to roll with each punch, Rachel follows the forensics to a new pair of suspects and has them arrested, tossing the case into court, where Murphy's Law prevails. When new evidence exonerates one of the two suspects of the actual murders, Rachel reduces the charges against him, and he promptly makes bail and disappears. Jury selection favors nasty defense attorney Terry Fisk. So do the invidious rulings of Judge Osterman. Rachel's star witness gets impeached on the stand. The most sympathetic of the jurors has to discontinue her service. Desperate, Rachel goes behind her boss's back to hire a very iffy consultant, knowing that if she loses the case, she'll get fired. Not to worry. Rachel does it all: from her fine first-half detective work to her routine, overextended courtroom duty. Next time, she'll probably be judge, jury and executioner too.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316220934
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
03/25/2014
Series:
A Rachel Knight Novel Series
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
656
Sales rank:
65,441
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

Marcia Clark began practicing law as a criminal defense attorney. She became a prosecutor in the L.A. District Attorney's Office in 1981, and spent ten years in the Special Trials Unit where she handled a number of high profile cases prior to the O.J. Simpson case, including the prosecution of stalker/murderer Robert Bardo, whose conviction for the murder of actress Rebecca Schaeffer resulted in legislation that offered victims better protection from stalkers as well as increased punishment for the offenders.

Since the Simpson trial, Ms. Clark has toured the U.S. and Canada giving lectures on a variety of women's issues including domestic violence and inspirational/motivational speeches, as well as lectures on the latest high profile cases, public service careers, and of course, the Trial of the Century.

In May of 1997, her book on the Simpson case, Without a Doubt was published and quickly rose to #1 on the New York Times, Wall St. Journal, Washington Post, LA Times, and Publisher's Weekly bestsellers lists.

From February 1998 to 2000 Marcia was under contract as a legal analyst and expert commentator for NBC, CNBC and MSNBC. She appeared weekly as the substitute host of Geraldo Rivera's "Rivera Live," and also hosted "Equal Time" for CNBC and "Judge and Jury" for MSNBC. Marcia has appeared on the "Oprah Winfrey Show," the "Larry King Show," the "Today" show, "The Early Show," and "Good Morning America," among others, and provides legal commentary on a wide variety of cable shows such as "Anderson Cooper 360" and "Issues with Jane Velez Mitchell."

Marcia Clark (with writing partner, Catherine LePard) has sold hour-long pilots to the FX network, Lifetime, and VH1 and developed a half hour comedy for NBC. She has also developed reality projects for CBS and was an executive producer of a one hour reality pilot for CBS.

Marcia has published three novels which feature Los Angeles Special Trials prosecutor Rachel Knight: Guilt by Association, Guilt by Degrees, and Killer Ambition, which is due out in June 2013. TNT has optioned the books and a drama series is currently in development. Marcia is attached as an executive producer. She's currently at work on her fourth novel.

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