The Kill Shot (Jamie Sinclair Series #2)

The Kill Shot (Jamie Sinclair Series #2)

by Nichole Christoff

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The Kill Shot (Jamie Sinclair Series #2) by Nichole Christoff

In an explosive thriller for readers of Lee Child, Alex Berenson, and Brad Taylor, P.I. and security specialist Jamie Sinclair finds herself caught in a dangerous game of international cat-and-mouse.
Jamie Sinclair’s father has never asked her for a favor in her life. The former two-star general turned senator is more in the habit of giving his only child orders. So when he requests Jamie’s expertise as a security specialist, she can’t refuse—even though it means slamming the brakes on her burgeoning relationship with military police officer Adam Barrett. Just like that, Jamie hops aboard a flight to London with a U.S. State Department courier carrying a diplomatic pouch in an iron grip.
Jamie doesn’t have to wait long to put her unique skills to good use. When she and the courier are jumped by goons outside the Heathrow terminal, Jamie fights them off—but the incident puts her on high alert. Someone’s willing to kill for the contents of the bag. Then a would-be assassin opens fire in crowded Covent Garden, and Jamie is stunned to spot a familiar face: Adam Barrett, who saves her life with a single shot and calmly slips away. Jamie’s head—and her heart—tell her that something is very wrong. But she’s come way too far to turn back now.

Don’t miss any of Nichole Christoff’s white-knuckle Jamie Sinclair thrillers:

Praise for The Kill Shot
“The adventure begins without delay and with tight writing to keep up the momentum. . . . Thanks to Christoff’s labyrinth-style of intrigue and mystery, the enjoyment is in trying to solve the puzzle. Good luck, because in The Kill Shot, Christoff doesn’t make the adventure a cake walk. She understands how to keep her readers riveted from beginning to end.”USA Today

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101883013
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 03/17/2015
Series: Jamie Sinclair Series , #2
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 282
Sales rank: 20,387
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Nichole Christoff is a writer, broadcaster, and military spouse who has worked on air and behind the scenes producing and promoting content for radio, television news, and the public relations industry across the United States and Canada. Christoff is a lifetime member of Sisters in Crime and the Jane Austen Society of North America. She also belongs to Private Eye Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, and three of RWA’s local chapters where she’s served as an officer and a member of the board. In Christoff’s first year as a member of RWA, her first manuscript won the Golden Heart for Best Novel with Strong Romantic Elements. Her second manuscript won a Helen McCloy Scholarship from Mystery Writers of America. Her last manuscript was a finalist for the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. Her latest novel, The Kill Shot, is a 2014 Killer Nashville Claymore Dagger finalist.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

“I’ll give you a hundred bucks,” I told the cabdriver, “if you get me to Georgetown in the next ten minutes.”

The cabbie, a timid guy with the face of a pug and photos of his five kids pasted to his dash, glanced at me in the taxi’s backseat. I dipped my fingertips into my Kate Spade evening bag, pulled out a Ben Franklin. When I flashed the bill at him, he hit the gas.

And I wanted to cheer.

Until he stomped on the brake.

The sudden change in speed sent me sliding across the cab’s blue vinyl upholstery. When the car skidded to a halt, I smoothed my silk taffeta skirt over my knees, shoved my square-rimmed glasses up the bridge of my nose, and glowered past the driver’s shoulder. Through the windshield, the unyielding eye of a red stoplight glowered back.

“Sorry, miss.” The cabbie grinned in apology and the expression set his jowls aquiver. “The cameras, ya know?”

“Yeah, I know.”

Recently, Washington, DC’s city council had gotten serious about drivers who ran red lights. Or more accurately, they’d gotten serious about collecting fines from those drivers. In any case, I couldn’t blame the cabbie for being camera shy. I could only blame the politicians for their shortsightedness. Obviously, none of them had ever been late to one of my father’s fundraisers.

Of course, I had a good excuse for my tardiness.

Not that my father would see it that way.

He’d made it very clear he wanted me cleaned up, dressed up, and at his side when he delivered his speech. And my father, Senator James Sinclair, expected his orders to be obeyed. After all, long before the voters of the great state of New Jersey sent him to Capitol Hill, he’d been a two-star general in the United States Army.
I, on the other hand, am a private-investigator-turned-security-specialist. My client list includes that big-city mayor who ran for president a few years ago, that former basketball player in all those underwear ads, and even that jeweler who gave that movie star some white diamonds. Recently, though, I’d been hired by a hardworking family from the DC suburbs.

This family had lost a son in Afghanistan. And by lost, I mean he was missing in action. A freelance reporter thought he saw him, held captive in the hills—and Buck Levanworth, a self-styled soldier-of-fortune, swore he could get him out.

But mercenaries don’t come with résumés. They don’t provide references, either. So while the soldier’s desperate young wife leveraged all she owned to meet Levanworth’s exorbitant fee, her in-laws got busy talking to me.
It didn’t take me long to learn Buck was really named Gavin Miller. And that Gavin had no military experience whatsoever. In fact, the closest Gavin Miller had come to visiting Afghanistan was a Spring Break trip to Cancún. Because Gavin was a college dropout with a lengthy list of misdemeanors attached to his name. And I decided he wasn’t going to graduate from petty crime to all-out fraud if I could help it.

Simply put, I had zero tolerance for crooks who preyed on families. I had even less for those exploiting our soldiers. So after Gavin intercepted his target at the Lincoln Memorial, I cornered him below the great president’s stone chair.

Gavin promptly returned the favor.

By knocking me down the monument’s marble steps.

Still, with a skinned knee and a flying tackle, I got the better of Gavin Miller. The missing soldier’s wife would get her money back. So would the seven other families Miller had swindled with his scheme.

Of course, being involved in a tussle at a national monument meant I had to answer a boatload of questions for my pals in the Parks Service and the DC Police Department. I had to waste time patching up my bloody knee, too, before I could shower, wrangle my dark locks into submission, and slide into the lovely midnight-blue dress I’d hoped to wear anywhere but to an evening of stuffy old speeches. As a result, I was late for my father’s fundraiser—and stuck in a cab at a stoplight.

Red lights don’t stay red forever, though. Not even in Washington, DC. So sooner, rather than later, my cabbie and I reached Lowengren House—the site of my command performance.

Built in 1764, and perched high atop Georgetown’s Prospect Street, the brick mansion has overlooked the Potomac for more than two centuries, playing host to a bevy of presidents, diplomats, and other robber barons since the nation’s birth. This evening, the house and its family stood ready to welcome my father and his benefactors.

Being late, I wasn’t sure what kind of welcome my father would extend to me. Or—after my tumble down the Lincoln Memorial’s stairs—if I could pass his muster. Fortunately, black silk stockings hide a multitude of sins. When I paid the cabdriver his fare—and his well-deserved tip—he never so much as glanced at the bruises I knew were darkening my leg.

Neither did the Capitol Police officers checking IDs in the drive.

Eight camouflaged security cameras tracked my progress through the estate’s wild English garden. I couldn’t see them, but I knew they were there. After all, I’d designed their layout. I’d recommended glass-break sensors on the house’s mullioned windows, too, and electronic locks drilled into the house’s front double doors. The doors themselves had come from Britain nearly three centuries ago. I hadn’t recommended their replacement. Cut from an ancient oak and older than dirt, by now they were stronger than steel.

Tonight, they stood wide to allow latecomers to enter the mansion at their leisure. As I crossed beneath the lintel, the chill of the coming autumn rose to meet me from the foyer’s black and white marble tiles. But that was the only welcome I got.

The speeches had started. I could hear the droning of an amplified voice and a smattering of polite applause from somewhere deep in the house. I cut through a delicately decorated space of yellow silk and blue toile, hustled into the darkly paneled room beyond. There, on dining tables long enough to have accommodated a mess of Napoleon’s military officers, donations for the night’s silent auction lay on luscious green jacquard tablecloths. I had to take the time to bid on something—and I had to be successful at it. Otherwise, I’d hear about it later.
Naturally, there were plenty of items to choose from. That is, if I craved his-and-hers Rolexes glittering in matching mahogany boxes, or all-inclusive stays at Scotland’s famous St. Andrews Golf Club for me and my sweetie. I liked that stuff well enough. But here’s the thing. These days, I was flying solo.

In the spring, I’d met a man. A soldier, to be precise. And a military police officer to boot.

His name was Lieutenant Colonel Adam Barrett. He was strong when it counted and kind when it didn’t, and he made me feel like love might be possible for even me. Thanks to a special assignment, though, he’d left the country before I could figure out if that were true.

So I was alone again. Not that I minded. Much.

Over my shoulder, the applause grew louder and a new speaker started in on my father’s attributes. I stuffed all thoughts of Barrett into the deepest chamber of my heart and snatched up a ballpoint pen. I scribbled bids for a flat-screen TV I didn’t need and custom car detailing I didn’t want.

That’s when I saw an offering that made the hair on the back of my neck stand at attention.

Nestled in a cut-crystal Waterford box lay a dozen handcrafted truffles—the first serving in a year of designer chocolates delivered to the winning bidder’s door.

I didn’t need the candy dish. Didn’t even need the chocolate, really. But before practicality got the better of me, I scrawled my name on the bid sheet, added a string of zeroes that had nothing to do with charity, and rushed into the adjoining room—a ballroom—just as my father ascended to the podium on the far side.

Applause thundered through the crowd like a herd of water buffalo. I threaded my way between dinner tables draped with enough white linen to supply a mummy factory, dodging society matrons in the latest Donna Karan and the latest wives in Sarah Burton. The men wore designer eveningwear, too. Some looked like they’d worn tuxedoes all their lives. The rest looked as comfortable as penguins on the lam from the zoo. Collectively, though, they could’ve bought and sold the American economy ten times over. Now, here they were, on their feet in ovation, having paid princely sums to eat a caterer’s warmed-up dinner to support my father.

His ability to inspire those around him never ceased to amaze me—and I’d seen him do it all my life. Sure, his bravery in Vietnam had been admirable and his leadership in the First Gulf War invaluable. But those experiences were written in his biography, not on his face. Like a seventy-year-old Clark Kent, his dark hair had merely silvered at the temples and his spine was as straight as the day he’d graduated from West Point. His physicality didn’t matter, though. It wasn’t my father’s looks that moved men and women. It was how he looked at the world.

“Friends,” my father began, his authoritative baritone reaching every corner of the ballroom. “It’s good to see so many of you here tonight.”

That’s when my father’s eagle eye latched onto me in the crowd. And not for the first time, I knew how a bunny rabbit feels as the raptor swoops in on her. Of course, this was my father’s strength and what garnered him such respect. The Senator could make anyone feel exposed, everyone feel inadequate. Even his own daughter.
Roger Lind, my father’s chief of staff, hovered three paces behind him and off to the side. He saw me, too, and helped me up the steps of the dais. My knee screamed so loudly, I was surprised folks didn’t hear it, but they were already hanging onto the promises my father was making.

After another round of applause, the ordeal was over.

And as my father shook every hand he could find, Roger slipped an arm firmly through mine.

At thirty-eight, he and I were the same age, but he looked a lot better than I did. Of course, he had the benefit of a recent four-hundred-dollar haircut and an intern to steam his Ralph Lauren tuxedo. Also, he hadn’t just done a tuck-and-roll down the steps of a national monument.

He said, “The Senator will be delighted you made it, Jamie.”

Really, I thought delighted was an overstatement, but I didn’t bother to point that out to him.

He steered me away from the chaos and toward a table with a ring of carefully calligraphed place cards.
My name was the only one I recognized.

Roger said, “I know the Senator wants to steal a moment to have a word with you, too.”

“Well”—I snagged a glass of champagne from a passing waiter’s tray—“if he’s too busy to talk tonight, he’s got my number.”

Not that my father ever called me.

The Senator had staffers to do that sort of thing for him.

Roger chuckled as if I’d said something funny and took his leave. Gladly, I sank into my seat. I didn’t know the portly banker and his wife who sat across from me, or the pretty advertising executive who’d brought a Redskins linebacker as her date. They were all nice enough. And they were enamored by the fact that I was a chip off the senatorial block. Not that my paternity held their attention for very long. The couples got lost in their own little worlds, billing and cooing like turtledoves until I began to feel as welcome as a cat among pigeons.

Most annoyingly, all this made my thoughts stray to Barrett. I hadn’t heard from him the entire summer, I didn’t know where he’d gone, and I didn’t know when he’d be back. Of course, chances were I wasn’t allowed to know. As a military policeman in the U.S. Army, Barrett often spent time overseas in places travel agents never mentioned and politicians couldn’t stop talking about. Worst of all, Barrett had the shrapnel scars to prove it.
By the time our server slipped a wilted salad dressed with too much vinegar in front of me, I was ready for more than a plate of greens. I wanted to escape this shindig and the happy couples at my table. I wanted to slip away from my father, too. I wanted to take my aching knee back to my place, curl up with a cold bottle of champagne and the luscious chocolates on offer in the next room. As the winners of the silent auction began to be announced, I wanted to hear my name more than anything.

And then I did.

But not from the auction volunteer at the podium.

“Hello, Jamie,” a familiar male voice said.

The last time I’d seen him, he’d worn the gray-and-green-patterned uniform civilians call fatigues—and he’d been on his way to board a plane. Tonight, though, Lieutenant Colonel Adam Barrett wore a black tux and crisp white shirt worthy of a Hollywood leading man. And he was different in other ways, too. Oh, the tailoring showed off the same broad shoulders and beautiful boxer’s build I’d appreciated last spring. But now, sunburn smudged his cheekbones before fading into the paler planes of his face. And unless I was mistaken, more silver threaded his golden hair than I’d ever seen before.

Still, I was thrilled to see him. I could’ve said a thousand welcoming things. I should’ve said them.

Instead, I blurted an unsophisticated, “What are you doing here?”

Barrett grinned. Whenever he smiled, angels sang and devils danced. Possibility crossed paths with potential heartbreak, and mortals like me got hot at the thought of either.

He placed the Waterford box on the table in front of me.

“I’m here,” Adam Barrett said, “to keep you in chocolate this year.”

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The Kill Shot (Jamie Sinclair Series #2) 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
booklover- More than 1 year ago
Jamie SInclair is a security specilist. She is also the daughter of a US General turned Senator who also has control issues when it comes to his daughter. When he comes to her asking for her help, she jumps at the chance to do something to finally earn his approval. She is asked to escort a diplomatic courier to London and to return the next day. Unfortunately, they have a greeting party .. one inclined to steal the papers that the courier is carrying. It only gets worse from there ..... I really like the toughness of Jamie, and understanding the relationship with her father through the author's words is at times sad and heart-breaking. Jamie has a love interest .. Adam Barrett, a US soldier who seems to care deeply for her. And then there is Philip, an old friend who professes to love her. One of them will betray her. I really enjoyed the book. ... lots of action, a bit of romance, but it doesn't detract from the bigger story. I have not read the first Jamie Sinclair book, but this one held up firmly as a stand-alone. Thank you to NetGalley and Publishers for furnishing a digital copy of this book in return for an honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Poorly written and stupid story with silly woman who doesn't understand anything. You figure everything out long before she does.She is busy feeling dizzy from kisses from handsome men. Really ?
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out Kritters Ramblings for the full review The second in the series with Jamie Sinclair and this one topped the first!  Jamie ends up over in London on a trip to protect a US State Department employee and the person who sends her, her father, doesn't quite give her all the details she needs for this mission.   The one thing that sets this book apart from the previous is the amount of characters that I flip flopped in feelings for - I couldn't decide if I trusted them or hated them all on the same page.  AND I loved it!  I love having mixed feelings about characters and thankful that the author resolved all of my feelings by the end!  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wrier spends more time discribing apparal than developing a good story. Reminded me of T.V. soap operah
JGYNC More than 1 year ago
This is a poor crafted not very well written book that can't decide if it is an action/mystery or a romance, and fails at both. The plot has so many holes in it and is based on such a wrong-headed view of how everything from the law to the human body works that it is constantly irritating. The main character is supposed to be a security consultant but is utterly surprised by the fact that she is tracked by the use of her credit card, please the most naive TV crime show watcher knows better. She injures her arm early in the book but the it seem to disappear and reappear in the effect that it has on her actions as the author’s whim takes it. The book labors over a shopping trip for pages, when the arm I guess has been detached, as it has no effect. Then it reappears giving her pain. Some high ranking British office has nothing better to do with his time than follow her around with his chauffeur. Yes he knows her but this is so contrived as to be very irritating again. The nuclear information that the character who is trying to be saved supposedly has are very poorly detailed even in the passing coverage that they are given. Also this woman is alternately very conservative then very modern. Her father, who cares about her so much as to defy the cultural norms in his county for years to give her an education and work to enable her flight to the US, just vanishes with no word. Why because the book had to have a reason for plodding on I never give up on a book but this one is just a waste of time. There are so many good indie writers out there doing similar genre bridging work. Try JD Nixon who can write a better plot with few holes, characters you can care about, and is much more enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another_Old_Guy More than 1 year ago
After being less than excited about the first book in this character series, I had high hopes for the second. The good is the actual writing. The style is comfortable and reasonably well written. The bad is the lame confusion between a romance novel and an action thriller that gets in the way of the story more often than it helps it. Then there is the very ugly. Where to start? The confusion of what a 'security specialist' is and does carries over from the first book where the character exists in a desperate reactionary mode for everything that happens. The understanding of military and State Department workings is also so flawed that even if you try to ignore the mistakes and just go with the story they keep coming back and breaking what should be a good read. Last but possibly the worst of all are the action sequences, and I stress 'sequence'. Where the initial action may be credible, the actions and reactions that follow aren't. I tried to like the character and the future of the series but I think two is my limit.
Aelius More than 1 year ago
If you are looking for a non-stop action packed book full of intrigue and spy chasing, then you should definitely check this one out. The Kill Shot is the second book featuring Jamie Sinclair, private detective-turned-security-agent for hire. Her Senator father hires her for what seems to be a routine job; guarding someone delivering a US diplomatic pouch to London and home again. Once Jamie gets off the plane in London, she quickly realizes that this job is anything but routine. I devoured this book. I literally read it in a couple of hours because I couldn't walk away from it. It was non-stop action from the beginning and didn't let up until the end. You never know who to trust in the book so it definitely will keep you on your toes. Jamie Sinclair is a great character. She is great at what she does, smart and beautiful. She is hesitant to give into her feelings for Adam, I did find that part of the book frustrating. I hope that he shows up in the next book and that they make some more progress. It would hate to have the" should I or shouldn't I?" question go on for too many books. I am looking forward to the next book
jayfwms More than 1 year ago
This was an exciting book from the very beginning. The personal interactions, the physical descriptions, and the on-going action combine to keep the reader entranced. Although this is a sequel, it does very well on its own. The characters are fully developed and any necessary backstory is supplied. It has more than enough traitors, turncoats and backstabbers to keep the reader in suspense for most of the book. the only thing that kept me from a five-star rating was the extreme and repetitive focus on making the reader aware that one character was a reluctant double agent.
Anonymous 3 days ago
Fun and easy to read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book and had trouble putting it down. Full of heart-pounding action. Looking forward to the next in the series. Long live Jamie!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have enjoyed both books in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good job ....kept the story moving
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The plot, characters, & settings are more complex than those in her first novel. Recommended! by aj west
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tried skipping and did not help. Dumb dirty book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this storyline and I have already ordered the next in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are into suspense and thrillers, I strongly recommend this book and series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BarbaraLyn More than 1 year ago
What does a former two-star general turned US Senator, a U.S. State Department courier and a military police officer have in common? They have Security Specialist Jamie Sinclair She has been asked by her father (US Senator) to escort Katie (US State Department courier) who is carrying a diplomatic pouch in an iron grip to England and bring her back home safely again. Adam Barrett (military police officer) has just caught her interest and leaving him is not what she had planned. Jamie becomes caught in a game of international intrigue which is getting more dangerous at every turn. They no more than land in London than they are attacked by two men, one of which is killed by a sniper. Jamie has only glimpse of the sniper but he looked suspiciously like Barrett. Questions start to form in Jamie’s mind. What exactly is in the diplomatic pouch? Who wants Katie or herself dead? Why would Barrett be in England? And exactly why did her father want her to be Katie’s escort? The answer to those questions and whether or not Jamie and Adam can get on with their lives can be answered when you read The Kill Shot. I found myself reading far into the night to get those answers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This author is new to me and I have enjoyed this book. It is well written, great characters, good story line and a fast paced page turner of a book. I highly recommend you give this author a try if you like a strong female character.