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Lawrence De Maria
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $2.99
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Book Description

The brutal murder of a schoolgirl. A dying hit man with a conscience. A priest harboring a terrible secret. An investigator seeking personal redemption.

All these elements collide in MADMAN’S THIRST, where billions are at stake in an international conspiracy involving a foreign power.

With locales as varied as Paris, New York, Florida and the Bahamas, and frightening scenes set at a NASCAR track and in a Manhattan high-rise, it is a Jake Scarne thrill ride at its best. Even powerful mob bosses and journalists are expendable pawns as a criminal mastermind, hiding in plain sight among New York’s power elite, pursues his deranged dream, aided by one of the world’s deadliest assassins.


Lawrence De Maria is a Pulitzer-nominated journalist who cut his teeth on financial corruption at The New York Times and Forbes. His thrillers and mysteries in the ALTON RHODE and JAKESCARNE series do not have to be read in order, but he believes to do so will enhance the reader’s experience.

Capriati’s Blood
Laura Lee
Siren’s Tears
Sound of Blood
Madman’s Thirst
The Viron Conspiracy.

A tenth thriller, Hurricane Fats, features CIA agent/assassin COLE SUDDEN. It is likely we haven’t heard the last of SUDDEN.


According to John Crudele of the New York Post, Alton Rhode has "a touch of Bourne, a dash of Bond and a sprig of Spenser."

“While De Maria may have been an award-winning financial reporter, he's an awfully good fiction writer as well.” (THE NAPLES DAILY NEWS)

“What is really almost beyond belief is how easily De Maria has transitioned from the dry world of financial reporting to the wild and lavish world of novel writing.” (THE COLLIER CITIZEN)

De Maria is “a master of thriller dialogue.” (THE WASHINGTON INDEPENDENT REVIEW OF BOOKS)

Product Details

  • File Size: 724 KB
  • Print Length: 279 pages
  • Publisher: St. Austin's Press (December 19, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0081TQLD2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #303,784 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Jake Scarne is back and author Lawrence De Maria has concocted another one of his potent mixtures of mystery, murder, finance and corruption in an entertaining tale involving the brutal rape and murder of a teenage girl, a shadowy real estate magnate and an indomitable private eye with gourmet tastes.

A longtime journalist, De Maria seems to have saved his juiciest stories for his fiction, and this one once again steps behind the scenes of a big city's power brokers -- an influential financial magazine and a local newspaper on the media side against greedy business interests and the best politicians money can buy on the other side.

Scarne, who first appeared in Sound of Blood, is still recovering from the hard knocks he took in that novel but is drawn into this case when the teenager's murder rocks Staten Island and information comes to light that it may not have been a random burglary gone bad but a targeted assassination to get her newspaper editor father off an investigation into some suspect property deals in the borough.

De Maria has a real flair with bad guys. As in Elmore Leonard's gritty novels, the villains here have personalities and preoccupations of their own. They are by and large not very bright, but some even have their own twisted integrity and professional pride. The really irredeemable bad guys usually meet an appropriately grisly end, so justice does prevail. But some others -- those with the redeeming qualities -- at times can even be allies for Scarne as he picks his lonely way through big-city corruption to solve his case.

De Maria inserts a number of novel twists and turns into the plot, and comes up with an attempt on Scarne's life as innovative as any bizarre situation ever faced by James Bond.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great adventure! May 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I really enjoyed meeting Private Eye Jake Scarne in this author's first thriller "Sound of Blood" so I was really excited to see that he wrote a second book with his main character along with a few other interestesing personalities that he brought along from his first book. This book has everything I look for in a suspense novel. A plot with lots of angles that keeps me guessing, plenty of bad guys, blood, money, sex & romance. You won't be disappointed. I am looking forward to many more adventure's with sexy PI Jake Scarne.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable Read. March 7, 2013
By Les
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have read several of the Scarne novels and I don't believe you can go wrong on giving any of them a try. They all present interesting, well written stories with a likable hero, some suspense and a little romance. I believe most people will find this story to be entertaining and worth their time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast learner, Mr. De Maria February 18, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was not prepared for such an improvement of DeMaria's skills as a fiction writer. While I could give only 3 stars to his first Jake Scarne book, I am joining now other readers awarding him all five.

No borrowing from old James Bond movies. No boring descriptions of golf games.

A fairly credible story based partially on reported events. You will find soon enough.

Mixture of blasting and praising Bahamas resorts - I have been to Bahamas only once and spent all the time snorkeling and watching barracudas reciprocating by giving me the evil eye. In the ocean, of course, not in an aquarium.

There is some continuity with the first Jake Scarne book but it is not at all a sequel.

I can only congratulate the author for giving us a good read, with many original twists and turns and kind of politically correct in NOT depicting two gay guys as merciless murderers. The stereotype of interior designers fits much better.

Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thirst for power. December 15, 2012
By Bruce G
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A madman with a thirst for power and NO concern for anyone but himself. After all, no one else really mattered as long as he got what he wanted. With an almost unlimited amount of money (that of his and his backers), and the services of a hitman who never missed, he was certain that he could not fail in his plans ...... until Jake Scarne got involved.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read December 11, 2012
By marcia
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After reading this book, I proceeded to read all of Lawrence De Maria's books. He is a very skillful writer with good characters, plot, twists. Glad to find another author that I will read again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jake takes the Cake September 16, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a book that will keeping you guessing. It is a thriller that delivers the goods. This story has all the plot twists and suspense that a mystery needs, but it also has intricate characters (good guys and bad guys) who interact with the hero in a well written novel that has humor woven into the dialogue and details in the locations that make it real. Some may not care for the detailed descriptions of locales, but I find it welcome and the author is so much better than the average writer today that I also find it refreshing. De Maria reminds of the authors I grew up reading in the 50s & 60s. Well told, well written, well done.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid Sequel August 7, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I loved the first book by this author -- Sound of Blood, which I see is in print now. This is a lot shorter but almost as much fun. Highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Was a great read. Hope he keeps going with more story lines
Published 1 month ago by thornof2roses
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read
It had a enjoyable story that held your interest, was very close to actions taken by real people. to much explicit sex that I found unnecessary
Published 5 months ago by Reverend Stan Chapin
4.0 out of 5 stars Love this author
This is the second de Maria book I've read. He's got the anti-hero down pat and his imagination is not be believed!
Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars another fun read
Really liked this book. Character driven with one of the most unusual villains I've come across. Starts out as murder mystery and winds up something else entirely.
Published 10 months ago by eaflash
5.0 out of 5 stars great read!
Another good entry from this author. Lots of humor and interesting facts make what is basically a tragic story very readable. Fast moving, with twists and turns. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Deborah T
1.0 out of 5 stars Too confusing and hard to follow!
I read 10 percent of this mess, quit and deleted it. All the author did was introduce one new character after another and.....nothing basically happened! Read more
Published 10 months ago by Dog Mom
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this writer
The way this writer introduces humor in stories which are far from humorous is so refreshing. Jake Scarne is a great character! More, more, more!
Published 12 months ago by Barbara Nelson
5.0 out of 5 stars Murder, corruption, hit men and honor among thieves
Just one good read.

Jake still isn't himself after the death of Loeb.

He's been coasting along. His friends are worried about him. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Claudette
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More About the Author

"A touch of Bourne, a dash of Bond and a sprig of Spenser," says John Crudele of the New York Post, adding to the chorus of media critics who praise the grit and humor of Lawrence De Maria's novels, calling him a "master" of thriller dialogue. Beginning with SOUND OF BLOOD, which introduced private investigator Jake Scarne, De Maria has created three unique series of thrillers and mysteries that have been downloaded by more than 100,000 readers.

There are currently three other Scarne thrillers: MADMAN'S THIRST, KILLERFEST and THE VIRON CONSPIRACY. Another private eye protagonist, Alton Rhode, is featured in five mysteries: CAPRIATI'S BLOOD, LAURA LEE, SIREN'S TEARS, SISTER and GUNNER. Cole Sudden, an operative for an ultra-secret C.I.A. unit, is featured in HURRICANE FATS.

Following a stint in the U.S. Marines, De Maria was an award-winning crime and financial reporter, earning a Pulitzer nomination at The New York Times. His fiction writing, loosely grounded in real-life experiences dealing with some of the most notorious criminals in recent American history, is strongly influenced by Ian Fleming, Robert B. Parker, Ed McBain and John D. MacDonald. De Maria reviews books, in all genres, for the Washington Independent Review of Books.

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