From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series
Rick Riordan, triple-crown winner of the Edgar, Anthony, and Shamus Awards, brings his fast-talking, hard-living, Texas-hip P.I. Tres Navarre to the heart of the Lone Star State—Austin—to unravel a case so dark, twisted, and deadly, it can only involve family....
Tres Navarre, the P.I. with a Ph.D. in literature, heads to Austin for a laid-back summer teaching gig. But he’s in store for a whole lot more. His big brother Garrett--computer whiz, Jimmy Buffett fanatic, and all-around eccentric—is hoping to retire a multimillionaire by the fall. He’s bet his career and the Navarre family ranch to do it.
Then Garrett’s oldest friend and business partner is murdered—and Garrett is the only suspect. As Tres delves into Garrett’s bizarre world to find the truth behind the murder, he comes face to face with the damaged relationships, violent lives, and billion-dollar schemes of a high-tech world gone haywire. Connecting them all is beautiful Lake Travis and the shocking secret that lies within its depths. Now, as Tres struggles with his own troubled family past and to clear his brother’ s name, he finds himself stalked by a cold-blooded killer—one who could spell the death of both Navarres.
About the Author
Hometown:San Antonio, TX
Date of Birth:June 5, 1964
Place of Birth:San Antonio, TX
Education:B.A. in English and History, University of Texas
Read an Excerpt
Date: Wed 07 June 2000 19:53:16 -0500
X-Mailer: Mozilla 3.01Gold (Macintosh; I; PPC)
I’d snuck some things from the kitchen, vials of food coloring, Dixie cups, a pitcher of water. I was in my bedroom mixing potions, watching how the dyes curl in the water.
That doesn’t sound like much, I know. But I’d spilled a few cupfuls onto the carpet. My fingers were stained purple. It was enough to give the Old Man an excuse.
He came in so quietly I didn’t hear him, didn’t know he was standing over me until I caught his smell, like sweet smoked beef. He said something like, “Is this what we clean the house for? We clean the house so you can do this?”
Then I realized water was running in the bathroom. I remembered what my friend had said.
I tried to apologize, but the Old Man caught my wrists, dragged me backward, using my arms as a harness.
I kicked at the carpet and walls as he pulled me down the hallway. When we passed the bathroom doorjamb, I got one hand loose and grabbed at it, but the Old Man just yanked harder, ripping a nail off my finger.
The ceiling sparkled white. I remember bare avocado rings on the shower rod, plastic star-rivets holding up the mirror. The Old Man lifted me, squeezed me against his chest. I was clawing, grabbing at his clothes. Then he dumped me in. The cold stopped my blood. I floated, wet to my armpits, my clothes grafted to my chest, heavy.
I knew better than to try standing. I lay low, crying, the water nipping the backs of my ears. My mouth tasted salt. There was a comma of blood from my ripped nail on the Old Man’s shirt pocket, purple smudges from my dyed fingers on his chest.
He said, “What did you do wrong? Tell me what you were doing.”
His voice sounded kindly in the tiled acoustics of the bathroom, rich and deep.
I couldn’t answer. I cried.
“I don’t want to hear that,” he scolded. “Until you can tell me what you did, I don’t want any sound from you.”
I kept crying, knowing it was the wrong thing to do, but crying more because of that. So he leaned over me, pushed my chest, and the water closed over my head.
Sound turned to aluminum. I could hear my own struggling and splashing. Water lapped into the overflow drain, rushed through pipes in the walls like underground machinery.
The Old Man shimmered above me, his hand keeping a warm, constant clamp on the middle of my chest. I clawed at his wrist, but it might as well have been a mesquite branch.
I held my breath, which is hard when you’re facing up, the water flooding your nostrils, gagging you.
I tried to be still. I thought maybe if I were still, the Old Man would let go.
I studied the hazy balls of light above the sink.
My lungs burned.
And finally, the first clear decision I ever remember making, I gave up. I breathed in the water.
At that moment, as if he knew, the bastard lifted me out, rolled me onto the tiled floor.
I curled, cold and trembling, belching water, my throat on fire.
“Be grateful,” he said. “Be grateful for what you have.”
That was only the first time.
Over the years, he taught me that drowning a thing you hate, drowning it well and drowning it completely, is a slow process. It is an art only the patient can master.
And I learned to be patient. I’ll always credit the Old Man for that.
Table of Contents
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I bought the book, and it only shows a sample
Kiss the back of your hand three times, post this on three other books and look under your pillow
You do know that rick lives in texas right i feel like you did not know tha
Now why this book gotta be in texas? I live in austin and i tell you there isnt nothing unique about it. I havent resd the book(and i probably never will) but i an positive rick will make stereotypicsl remarks and slurs targeted at Texas. ill have you know austin is the 11th biggest city in the US and we are not just some hick town out in the country. We have skyscrapers and buses. And btw i dont know a single person who rides their horse to school. And why this book got to be about the devil? Ma boy rick might as well be calling us satanists! In texas's defense i only know two satanists. Dang im tired of all the stereotypes. Yes a lot of texans own ranches but thats who we are so why do you insecure northerners care? I bet half you yanks could have the experiences ive had in my 12 years of age. I admit it dies get hot but that builds character. END STEREOTYPES
San Antonio resident English professor and private investigator Tres Navarre looks forward to spending six weeks in Austin teaching literature. Though he will spend time with his older brother Garrett that part of the ¿paid vacation¿ is not that appealing. Still blood is blood and Tres will stay with his sibling, who along with a friend and the man¿s wife has started up a security software company. However, to finance Techsan, Garrett has put up as collateral the family farm. Things still look bright until a hostile takeover begins. Soon, someone murders one of Garrett¿s partners and though he is wheelbound the police believe he is the culprit. Garrett rejects little brother¿s interference, but Tres never listened to him when they were growing up so he ignores doing it now. He embarks upon his own brand of investigation in an effort to clear his brother as a suspect. Edgar award winning Rick Riordan proves why he is so highly regarded with his fourth Navarre tale, THE DEVIL WENT DOWN TO AUSTIN. The story line is very fresh while providing readers with insight into Tres¿ personal life through his relationship with Garrett. By incorporating the personal into the who-done-it, readers obtain a smooth mystery that never slows down while gaining a better understanding of the hero. Mr. Riordan may soon need a larger mantelpiece. Harriet Klausner
Kiss your hand three times post this in three other books and look under your pillow.