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Trigger City

( 13 )

Overview

The facts:

A lonely woman was murdered by her disturbed coworker.

The police have investigated. The case is closed.

But facts are not truth.

A routine investigation of an open-and-shut case is just what PI Ray Dudgeon needs to recover from the physical and emotional consequences of confronting the Chicago Outfit—until "routine" spirals out of control. The victim was no ...

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Trigger City (Ray Dudgeon Series #2)

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Overview

The facts:

A lonely woman was murdered by her disturbed coworker.

The police have investigated. The case is closed.

But facts are not truth.

A routine investigation of an open-and-shut case is just what PI Ray Dudgeon needs to recover from the physical and emotional consequences of confronting the Chicago Outfit—until "routine" spirals out of control. The victim was no quiet, unassuming, unlucky single woman; she lived a double life in the shadowy realm of covert intelligence . . . and she died for the truth. Suddenly, Ray's ensnared in a conspiracy of darkness that weaves its way through the very fabric of the nation, and in grave danger of becoming collateral damage in America's war on terror. And his greatest enemy may be himself.

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Editorial Reviews

Sara Paretsky
“A riveting and terrifying novel—a true thriller in every sense of the word. . . . Masterful.”
Robert Crais
“Packed with action and heart-breaking moments of truth.”
Andrew Gross
“Taut, hair-raising and ultimately enriching. You will not be disappointed.”
Ken Bruen
“The writing is superb—dark poetry and violence in a seamless narrative of love, pain and redemption. Trigger City will break your heart in ways you never imagined.”
Tasha Alexander
“Trigger City . . . grabs you hard on the first page and doesn’t let go, even after you’ve closed the book.”
Loren D. Estleman
“Trigger City is a compelling story . . . sharp, translucent, and original—Sean Chercover seems incapable of penning a cliché.”
The Strand Magazine
“Trigger City will grip you from start to end…another masterful stroke from the pen of Sean Chercover.”
Chicago Tribune
“Plenty of exciting and scary action....Could be the first of a new age of crime fiction....[Chercover] seems on his way to becoming the Ross Macdonald of his time, close to rubbing shoulders with Dashiell Hammett in the Crime Writers’ Hall of Fame.”
Washington Post
“Highly entertaining....Chercover is a colorful, quotable writer.”
Chicago Tribune
"Plenty of exciting and scary action....Could be the first of a new age of crime fiction....[Chercover] seems on his way to becoming the Ross Macdonald of his time, close to rubbing shoulders with Dashiell Hammett in the Crime Writers’ Hall of Fame."
The Strand Magazine
"Trigger City will grip you from start to end…another masterful stroke from the pen of Sean Chercover."
Washington Post
"Highly entertaining....Chercover is a colorful, quotable writer."
Sara Paretsky
"A riveting and terrifying novel—a true thriller in every sense of the word. . . . Masterful."
Robert Crais
"Packed with action and heart-breaking moments of truth."
Andrew Gross
"Taut, hair-raising and ultimately enriching. You will not be disappointed."
Ken Bruen
"The writing is superb—dark poetry and violence in a seamless narrative of love, pain and redemption. Trigger City will break your heart in ways you never imagined."
Tasha Alexander
"Trigger City . . . grabs you hard on the first page and doesn’t let go, even after you’ve closed the book."
Loren D. Estleman
"Trigger City is a compelling story . . . sharp, translucent, and original—Sean Chercover seems incapable of penning a cliché."
Publishers Weekly

When Isaac Richmond, a retired army colonel, asks Chicago PI Ray Dudgeon to look into his daughter's murder, Dudgeon, who's still recovering from the injuries he sustained in Big City, Bad Blood, reluctantly agrees to take the $50,000 case in this engrossing follow-up. Joan Richmond's death looks straightforward: a deranged co-worker, Steven Zhang, shot her in her home and then committed suicide. Never one to accept the simplest answer, Dudgeon starts digging and discovers that Joan's former employer was Hawk River, a military contract company under congressional investigation. Steve's widow soon reveals her husband's ties to China, and Dudgeon realizes that Joan's murder could lead back to both the Department of Homeland Security and some ruthless military contractors. Himself a former PI, Chercover brings a crackling authenticity to Dudgeon, paying homage to the noir masters while creating a doggedly stubborn new hero all his own. (Oct.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

If a crime thriller can be described as both gritty and laid-back, then Chercover would be the name on the cover. In this follow-up to Big City, Bad Blood, newspaperman-turned-PI Ray Dudgeon is still recovering from the events of his last big case. Suffering physical pain from an injured shoulder that needs surgery and mental pain from flashbacks to the torture he endured, Ray nevertheless maintains his cool, wisecracking demeanor. When he's offered a lot of money to investigate what everyone agrees is an open-and-shut murder/suicide, Ray tries to do the right thing and turn his client down. But financial pressures and his own curiosity soon have him involved in a case that puts private contractors (think Blackwater), Homeland Security, and black ops agents on his tail. Though the subject matter is heavy (and timely), Chercover maintains a fast pace throughout. And the likable but always tough Dudgeon is a worthy successor to Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch and Robert Crais's Elvis Cole. Recommended for all public libraries.
—Jane Jorgenson

Kirkus Reviews
A Chicago private eye who signs on to help a grieving father learns that grief can be complicated. When Joan Richmond, 44, opens her apartment door to her friend and business associate Steven Zhang, he shoots her, then himself, leaving behind a signed confession. Exactly why he killed her is a matter of conjecture, though many testify that before the murder Zhang had been behaving erratically, like a man whose mind had suddenly broken under some impossible burden. Colonel Isaac Richmond asks private eye Ray Dudgeon (Big City, Bad Blood, 2007) to investigate his daughter's murder, but Ray resists at first. Investigate what? he asks. How could the facts of the case be any more cut and dried? Not until the bereaved father offers him $50,000 "to bring me the truth of Joan's death" does Ray's resistance crumble, partly because he needs the money, partly because he understands that facts are only facts, and truth transcends them. He begins a search that takes him to unexpected places, hidden corridors of power where he encounters dark and dangerous conspiracies. Along the way, he discovers that truth can be elusive and that sorrow too is a many-sided thing. An engaging, Marlowe-like hero, but Chercover's villains are mostly slick, one-dimensional operators on behalf of a malevolent government, and we've seen their like before, in and outside the pages of fiction. Agent: Denise Marcil/Denise Marcil Literary Agency
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061128707
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/25/2009
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 949,313
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 4.32 (h) x 0.84 (d)

Meet the Author

Formerly a private investigator in Chicago and New Orleans, Sean Chercover has since written for film, television, and print. His first novel, Big City, Bad Blood, won and was nominated for numerous awards. He lives in Chicago and Toronto, and the commute is killing him.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

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(9)

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(2)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 14 of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 27, 2008

    an excellent Chicago Noir

    In Chicago unable to let go the unsolved murder of his daughter Joan, Colonel (R) Isaac Richmond hires injured (see BIG CITY, BAD BLOOD) private investigator Ray Dudgeon to investigate in what appears to be a solved case. Dudgeon knows he still should refuse as he is still healing, but accepts the $50,000.--------------- To everyone including the sleuth with the lone exception of her father believe Joan¿s insane co-worker Steven Zhang killed her and then himself in a murder-suicide. However, being a professional Dudgeon looks beyond the obvious to see if any other potential suspect exists. He learns Joan worked for the Hawk River Company that thrives on Defense Department and Homeland Security contracts and Zhang¿s widow admits her late spouse had contacts in China. As the case spins even crazier, Dudgeon begins to believe there were two homicides committed instead of a murder-suicide.--------------- TRIGGER CITY is an excellent Chicago Noir as Dudgeon keeps digging in spite of threats to his still bruised and battered well being. The story line is fast-paced from the onset and never looks back once the sleuth accepts the case. Readers will enjoy Drudgeon¿s tour of Chicago as he turns from skeptic to believer while the inquiry turns strange and potentially deadly.--------------- Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2013

    !

    Very entertaing book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2013

    Excellant book

    Good tightly ploted writing, believable characters, exceptional pacing. This is the second book by this author that Ihave read, I hope to buy and read many more

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    "A man who won't die for something is not fit to live." M.L. King

    P.I. Ray Dudgeon accepts a case to check the background of the murder of Joan Richmond. She was killed by Steven Zhang. Joan's father, a retired army colonel, tells Ray that he needs closure. He was speaking to his daughter on the phone when she answered the door and was killed.

    Ray learns that Joan's prior employer was H.N.Nichols, military contractors. There were rumors of assassinations and sabotage by the company. Joan ran the company payroll and currently a congressional committee was looking into the company's billing practices. Joan was scheduled to appear before the committee.

    When Ray speaks to the head of H.N. Nichols, he's given the brush off. He's introduced to Blake Sten, corportate VP of security who tries to intimidate Ray without success.

    Ray comes to believe that Zhang found something in the corporate files. Sten fires Zhang with a fabricated story. Soon after, both Zhang and Joan are dead.

    I was totally captivated by the story. Not only is Ray a good detective but he is believable showing his shortcomings as well as his strengths. He does make two decisions which are incorrect and have a fatal result for two characters. The author gives some nice plot twists that add to the interest in the story.

    Critics agree. "Trigger City" has received the following allocades.
    Agatha Award nominee 2009
    Barry Award nomination 2009
    Crimespree Award, Favorite Book of 2008
    Dilys Award.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 13, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Credible and Gritty Detective Fiction

    With an easy flow and quick-pace, this story recounts the gritty and credible story of Chicago P. I. Ray Dudgeon's investigation of an open-and-shut murder on behalf of the victim's father who says he wants the 'truth' behind his daughter's death. In both small and large detail, the story is taunt and believable. Dudgeon is a personable, down-to-earth gumshoe. The plot, which includes a few surprising twists, is realistic and engaging. Further, the conclusion is thoroughly satisfying and convincing. The story's only flaw is the overly romanticized relationship/attraction between Dudgeon and his x-girlfriend. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone interested in contemporary noir detective fiction.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 13, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Credible And Gritty Detective Fiction

    With an easy flow and quick-pace, this story recounts the gritty and credible story of Chicago P. I. Ray Dudgeon's investigation of an open-and-shut murder on behalf of the victim's father who says he wants the 'truth' behind his daughter's death. In both small and large detail, the story is taunt and believable. Dudgeon is a personable, down-to-earth gumshoe. The plot, which includes a few surprising twists, is realistic and engaging. Further, the conclusion is thoroughly satisfying and convincing. The story's only flaw is the overly romanticized relationship/attraction between Dudgeon and his x-girlfriend. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone interested in contemporary noir detective fiction.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted October 26, 2009

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