Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Man Who Needed Killing Paperback – March 16, 2011
|New from||Used from|
See the Best Books of 2017
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
About the Author
Susan Cogan is a full time writer and occasionally amuses herself as a graphic designer. She writes things that she enjoys and she enjoys quite a lot. She has been at various times a nurse's aid, a belly dancer, an actress, a journalist, and a radio shock jock. Her career is long, varied, colorful, often exaggerated and occasionally untrue. Cogan is the author of many novels: Black Jade Dragon, Dragon Sword, Tangled Garden, The Last Gift, Heart of the Tengeri, Murder on the Waterfront and The Man Who Needed Killing. Her nonfiction works include: Hands of the Buddha, The Buddha's Three Jewels, and The Pocket Darwin. She written numerous short stories, some of them contest winners.
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle Edition for FREE. Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.
For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases now lets you buy the Kindle edition for $2.99 or less. (Textbooks available for $9.99 or less.)
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The time is 1935, and this book is set in the midst of the most accurate depiction of Oklahoma during the Great Depression that I have ever read. The book placed in the Top 100 of Amazon's 2008 Breakout Novel Contest, and won first place in the Mystery Division of the 2010 Oklahoma Writers Federation annual contest.
The "man who needed killing" is Judge Bill Cooper who almost beat a sharecropper to death in front of witnesses. Everyone hates and fears Cooper, including Sheriff Joe Bennett, whose paycheck depends on the Judge's good will. The Judge, and everyone in town, knows that Joe won't make a move to arrest the Judge.
(Quote) The Judge deserved thirty days in jail over that. Could get the sentence easy with as many witnesses as there were. Then, in thirty days, Joe would be fired. His wife and three-year-old son would starve while he joined the millions of men begging for work, any kind of work, all over the country. The New Deal would be No Deal for a man on the bad side of Judge Cooper. (End Quote)
Joe's overriding concern is the welfare of his wife and son, and so he takes a "no damage done" view. After all, the sharecropper will live. It's not the first time the Judge has crippled a man for the fun of it. When the Judge is murdered Joe faces a whole new set of problems.
Everyone shows up for the funeral, which is more like a low-key celebration. Even the preacher can't think of anything good to say about the deceased. A strange thing happens. Everyone in town seems to know who did the killing and everyone is lying about it. Everyone has an alibi for everyone else. Sheriff Joe Bennett is caught in a crucible from which he will emerge either as a coward or as a truly honest man.
So what started the whole mess? Was it the Judge's hateful nature and blatant immorality, tolerated by his long-suffering wife, or was it his secret deal to buy up local farms and lease them to an oil company that could make him a rich man? The sheriff vows to track down the killer no matter where the trail leads. There will be three more murders, plus several attempts on the sheriff's life, before the ugly truth comes out in a nail-biting conclusion.