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Dark Prophecy: A Level 26 Thriller Featuring Steve Dark Hardcover – October 14, 2010


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Product Details

  • Series: LEVEL 26
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Adult; First Edition edition (October 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525951857
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525951858
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #683,624 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

ANTHONY E. ZUIKER is the creator and executive producer of the most-watched television show in the world, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, as well as CSI: Miami and CSI: New York. Zuiker is a visionary business leader who speaks professionally about the future of entertainment and storytelling on multiple platforms. A mystery aficionado since childhood, Zuiker’s lifelong dream has been to write a crime novel. He lives in Las Vegas and Los Angeles with his wife and three children.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter 1
West Hollywood, California

Steve Dark snapped awake, rolled out of bed, dropped to the floor.

Landing silently on his fingertips and toes, he stayed frozen in place and listened. Traffic hummed on nearby Sunset. Someone laughed, drunkenly. There was the faint click-clack of high heels on concrete. A car horn, muted and distant. Normal L.A. night sounds. Nothing out of the ordinary.

But still…;

Supporting himself on fingertips and toes, Dark slowly crept through the house, keeping to the shadows, listening intently. The only sounds he could discern were the soft popping of his joints as he moved. Dark recovered his fifteen-round Glock 22 from its concealed space beneath the floorboards, then stood up on the balls of his feet. He slipped off the safety. He always kept a bullet chambered. The initial sweep took about ten minutes and revealed nothing. He checked the windows and doors, one by one. The front door—secured. Window locks—in place. Security system—on. Invisible window and door tape—unbroken. Not a single entry point had been disturbed.

Dark put himself through this routine so often it was almost becoming rote. Which was a problem. He couldn't let himself become complacent. He should devise another routine. Maybe think up another safeguard.

After slipping on the safety on his Glock, Dark placed it on the couch next to him. Then he opened his laptop and accessed the remote site that stored his video surveillance. Every square foot of his home was covered by pinhole-size, motion-activated cameras. The quality was low-res, but then again, Dark wasn't shooting precious family moments. He merely wanted to detect movement. Dark tapped the ENTER key, and the remote site began to download video from the past six hours that showed any movement whatsoever. When it finished loading, though, it only showed Dark's own movements through the house. Nothing else.

So what had he heard?

Just some stray noise from a nightmare?

Dark checked his watch. 3:21 A.M. Early, even for him. He didn't sleep much, and the loss of two more hours was disappointing. But at least the house was secure.

Wasn't it?

Dark had thought the same thing five years ago, and a monster had still managed to squirm his way into his living space. It had been a different house, with a much cruder security system, but it shouldn't have been so easy. Dark had learned the painful lesson: You could never be too careful. Dark had destroyed the monster with his own hands. Hacked away at his adversary until he resembled a pile on a butcher's table. Watched the pieces burn. Spread the ashes with a metal rake.

Still, the lesson remained: You could never be too careful.


Dark padded his way to the kitchen and flicked on his electric carafe that heated water in about sixty seconds. A coffee would be good. After that…; he didn't know what. Ever since leaving Special Circs, his days had seemed both shapeless and endless. Four months of limbo.

When he left, he told Riggins he had a lot of unfinished business. Namely, reconnecting with his daughter—who almost didn't recognize her father's voice on the phone.

But Dark had spent most of the summer installing security in his new home, telling himself he couldn't possibly bring his daughter here to visit without it being locked down tight, 100 percent secure. That process felt like battling a hydra. Chop off the head of one potential problem, six more seemed to spring up in its place. Dark did nothing but work on the house, check the Internet for murder stories, and try to sleep.

Five years ago he'd killed a monster. But no matter what he did, he couldn't shake the feeling that another monster was coming after him…;

So now it was three thirty A.M. and his instant coffee sat cooling in a mug and the sounds of L.A. murmured and there was nothing left to do.


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Customer Reviews

I usually don't comment on many books I read but this one book really deserved my comment.
Mel T
I haven't read the first in this series yet, but after reading Dark Prophecy, I will certainly be catching up on the series.
Robin Landry
This 3 book series is a very good read if you are interested in Criminal Minds type stories.
jodi

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By pammur on November 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Didn't come close to the first book, unfortunately. I was completely "creeped out" with the first book, full of suspense. The "bad guys" in this book were just regular, disgruntled, idiots. Was expecting much more. Probably would have like it more if I hadn't read the first book, but had high expectations for this after the first book. Too bad. A good mystery, but not exceptional. I didn't even bother going online into level26.com this time. What happened to the person who abandoned the black suit and I thought there was going to be a follow-up story about a red suit(?)
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Scott L. Wolpow on October 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I am a huge fan of the CSI franchise and was very excited to learn of Anthony Zuiker's new novel Dark Prophecy. It is very tough to come up with a fresh look at the serial murder detective genre.

And Anthony Zuiker does exactly that.

Zuiker delivers in more ways than one. His approach is fresh and exciting. It was hard to stop reading chapter after chapter. Steve Dark , his protagonist is very human and realistic, Rather than being a `guess who the killer is', we are drawn into how a detective would sort out the key to the killings.

The author also has expanded the genre into the virtual world. Zuiker spent over $250,000 creating an hour long cyber-bridge movie. This is a specially created film broken into smaller parts. Every few chapter you get a code that allows you to unlock the cyber-bridge at level26.com. These segments allow the writer a means of better illustrating his vision of the characters and the mood. Steve Dark now has a face. It is the modern means to illustrate novels. I expect to see more novelist utilizing the same method.

The only downside is now I must go and read the first book Dark Origin and I now have another writer to follow. I need to know more about the evil Sqweegel and the hints to Dark's dark family secret. [Sorry you have to read the book]

I am also looking forward to the CSI crossover of Dark's `Moriarty' Sqweegel on the October 14th episode.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Linda S. Dimezza on October 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dark Prophecy, the second Level 26 book, by Anthony E. Zuiker is just as good as the first. In some cases, I feel it is better. The bridges and the music will blow you away. They are hauntingly beautiful. I can tell you that many of them brought tears to my eyes. What can you say about Steve Dark? He's simply the best at what he does. His personal revelations in this book are a key factor to what he does and how he handles it. Dark's "rebirth" will leave you breathless, on one hand, and emotionally spent on the other. Justine Bateman, as Hilda, is fantastic. I loved her in the bridges and would love to see her reappear in book 3. The killers are scary and, of course, insane. Yet, you can feel empathy for what they have endured. Buy the book, read it and watch the bridges. Listen to "Henry's Theme". You will truly enjoy the experience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Timothy M. Holm on November 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Dark Prophecy: A Level 26 Thriller Featuring Steve Dark

Just finished the book and it was definitely a good read. Glad I bought it and I'm looking forward to the next installment in the series... That said

It's true that this book has a bit of a different "feel" than the first, but that doesn't make it poor read. For those who've read the novel of the series, Dark Origins, may have been expecting an almost super human killer. This book however, focused more on the character Steve Dark and made TCK, Tarot Card Killer, more anonymous and "human". As there are different kinds of people, why not killers. I for one would like to see yet another kind of killer in the next book.

The style of the Cyber-Bridges was unchanged from its first released book. If you enjoyed them, you will enjoy them again. My only concern is how they were released. I understand releasing them early helps draw attention to the novel, but at the same time, it draws away from the uniqueness that is the digi-novel. If you haven't already seen them, I would recommend waiting until you've reached the corresponding part of the book to do so.

It is my belief that with the story of Steve Dark being the main focus in this book, the next will focus on the killer yet again. Who knows what twisted mind will appear next.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By ellen VINE VOICE on October 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Level 26 - that is a level of evil that few see they are so horribly demented, so void of remorse they are the creme de la creme of people crime investigators search for.
In Dark Images, the first digi-novel Level 26 book, Anthony E. Zuiker visionary creator of CSI and Duane Swierczynski brought the thriller book to a new level - going to the site Level 26 and actually SEEING the terror as it unfolded.
I got so scared, I stopped going to the site as the book was scary enough.
It also introduced us to one of the greatest crime fighting minds - Steve Dark. In the first book he paid a horrible price.
And walks away.
But somehow he is made a major part of this second Level 26 book, Dark Prophecy. I didn't know how Zuiker could top the first novel, but wow he did in this book!
To give away much of the novel would in a way give away too much, but as the book deals with Dark's becoming familiar with the Tarot Deck, it is fair to say, he gets involved with villians who know every nuance of the Tarot and he has to work it out. This time not within the means of the law. He becomes almost vigilante-like and that makes the plot even more scary.
Does the one who fights evil any way he can become more evil that the ones he goes out to stop?
The ending is scarier the more you think on it - Although I applaud you who are courageous enough to go online to Level 26, having it play in your mind is a lot scarier.
And you thought Sqweegel was the ultimate villian - whoa -
Great thriller!
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