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Twisted (Tracers) Mass Market Paperback – April 17, 2012
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Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
The day Jordan Wheatley last ran free was clear and bright, like her sixteenth birthday. Like her wedding day. Like 9/11.
She’d overdressed that afternoon in sweatpants and a long-sleeved T-shirt, and she came off the trail with her face dripping and her ponytail saturated. She reached into her car for a tall bottle of water, guzzled most of it down, and poured the few remaining ounces over her head. Jordan checked the timer on her watch. Ninety-seven minutes. That extra two miles was going to make her late getting home, and Ethan would be in a sulk. She needed to hurry.
First, though, she tipped her head back to gaze at the sky and took a moment to just be. The late-afternoon sun touched her cheeks. She inhaled the crisp fall breeze, tinged with cedar. The runner’s high thrummed in her veins and her muscles felt loose. She could do anything. Everything. She could run the whole course all over again, right this minute if she wanted to.
But Ethan was waiting. She checked her watch again and tossed the empty bottle into the car.
“Hey, you wouldn’t happen to have a phone, would you?”
Jordan turned around and saw a young man standing beside a green minivan several spaces away. She glanced over her shoulder to see if he was talking to someone else.
“It’s the battery again.” He smiled. “My wife’s going to kill me this time—she told me to get it changed.” When Jordan hesitated, his expression turned wary. “But looks like you’re in a hurry. You probably don’t have time to play Good Samaritan, do you?”
She stepped forward. “No, it’s all right.” Then she remembered what he’d asked for and reached back into her car. Her cell phone was locked in the glove compartment, and she dug it out.
“You want me to call Triple A or . . . ?”
He sauntered over. “Thanks, but I’ll do it.”
She surveyed him more carefully now, feeling odd about handing over her phone to a complete stranger, even a nice-looking one. He was tall, dark-haired, and had wire-rimmed glasses. He wore faded jeans and a Rice University sweatshirt with the familiar blue crest on the front.
Jordan passed him the phone.
“I’ve actually got a favorite mechanic, if you can believe it. He specializes in German cars, but he owes me a favor, so . . .” He dialed a number with his thumb and pressed the phone to his ear, and Jordan turned around, pretending not to eavesdrop. She wiped the sweat from her brow with the back of her arm. In the distance she heard a pair of high-pitched barks as some dogs encountered each other on the trail.
“No answer. Damn. You have any jumper cables?” He smiled hopefully.
He sighed and looked around at the surrounding scenery—canyons, hills, and scrub brush as far as the eye could see. “So, what do you think the odds are we’ll be able to get a tow truck out here by sundown?” He glanced at the sky. “Not good, I’m guessing. I probably better call the wife.”
Relieved for some reason, she turned away to give him privacy as he made the call.
A weight slammed into her. Air exploded from her lungs with an oomf! and her face plowed into the gravel. She shrieked. The sound was cut off as her head was yanked back and then smashed forward. Pain lanced through her skull.
“Don’t make a sound,” he growled in her ear.
Jordan’s pulse pounded. Her mind reeled. She squirmed and struggled to breathe as his knee dug into her spine.
“You hear me?” He yanked her ponytail again, and her head snapped back. She gazed up at the blue sky and smelled her own terror, ripe and pungent.
This isn’t happening. But it was. Tears burned her eyes and her neck arched painfully. Her heart thundered inside her too-tight chest. For the first time in her life, she felt a fear so complete it replaced every sensation in her body.
Jordan bucked. She kicked and twisted, throwing elbows and knees. The weight slipped off and she scrambled to her feet. Fire shot down her leg as he clawed her skin.
She lunged for her car. He was right behind. He tackled her and she was on the ground again. A fist smashed into her cheek and a bright burst of pain exploded behind her eyes. Blood filled her mouth. She felt a tooth sliding around on her tongue.
He yanked her head back, and through the daze she felt him shift on top of her. She tried to scream, but his weight was on her and it came out like a wisp of air. A hand clamped hard over her mouth. He hauled her to her feet and dragged her across the gravel, and through tear-blurred vision she saw her car.
This isn’t happening. No, no, no!
Jordan writhed and struggled. Pain radiated down her right arm, but she used it anyway, reaching back, desperately trying to gouge his eyes. He gripped her harder. In the corner of her eye, she saw the side of the van. She kicked viciously, trying to break his hold. A muffled curse. He flung her against something hard, making her brain rattle against her skull. Nausea washed over her as his arms tightened once more. The pain was consuming. She felt it taking over, swallowing up her will to resist. All of her limbs quivered.
“There’s no point in fighting.” His breath was hot against her neck. “Just be quiet and I won’t have to hurt you.”
Jordan knew he was lying. From deep inside her came a primal scream.
Top Customer Reviews
Allison feels like she needs to be doubly on her game, at all times, being young on the force at the age of 27 and one of the few females. She puts in a ton of hours and doesn't want to make any mistakes since she already feels like she's on an uphill battle at work. She and Mark meet under unusual and dangerous circumstances when Allison is caught in the middle of a convenience store hold up. There's attraction between them from that first meeting, but Mark refuses to let himself go there. He thinks the age difference is too much and he has no room in his life for anything outside work. Work is his life and he carries around a load of burdens, thinking that he's the one that needs to save the world. His case load is unreal, and as Allison points out, he's on the edge of burnout, or a stress induced heart attack.
Intensity. Mark Wolfe had it in spades. Kelsey had put a name to it, but Allison had sensed it from the very beginning. It was in the way he moved, the way he spoke, the way he made an argument.Read more ›
Detective Allison Doyle, who you will recognize from Snapped, is caught in the middle of a robbery when she is helped by FBI Profiler, Mark Wolfe....and the sparks fly from there. Mark is a no-nonsense kind of agent who is in town working a serial murder case, that may or may not be connected to a recent homicide in the small-town of San Marcos.
Unfortunately for Mark, when Allison gets on a case, or bullies her way onto a case, she does not back down, even if it mean putting herself in danger. She tends to get under Mark's skin in more than one way, but he knows that a relationship, even a one night stand, is a bad idea. He is a workaholic and a relationship with a woman sixteen years his junior is not what he is looking for, but stubborn Allison is not backing down on the case or on Mark.
"I don't want to watch him look at you!" he boomed, and she jerked back. "I don't want him seeing you! Thinking about you! I don't want him goddamn smelling you, all right? He's a piece of s$#@ and you don't belong in the same room with him!"
OH BABY....Not only was I caught up in the Twists and Turns the case was taking, but the chemistry sizzling between Allison and Mark from the second they laid eyes on each other. I was hung up on every word, every look, every move these two made. It was like watching an intense chess game where you are awaiting the next move. I LOVED IT!! And Kelsey had it right when she said that Mark was "intense" and it was in everything he did, even the way he looked at Allison sometimes...I just wanted things to work out between them so bad.
And...we get the low down on WHAT HAPPENED WITH GAGE AND KELSEY...well...Read more ›
Both Mark and Allison carry burdens: hers the necessity to be perfect; his, the need to find the Death Raven. Together they solve the case and Allison learns to accept herself. However, Mark still struggles to the end. One of my favorite characters was the woman who survived the Death Raven. She is terrifyingly vulnerable.
All in all, a great novel by a highly talented writer.
I wanted to like this book. I liked the idea Allison being youthful, athletic, a detective, serious. Those qualities didn't work at all because she was also dumb, stupid and unsafe to work as a cop. Ric Santos and Jonah should have kicked out of the squad. I do need to ditto the other two stars reviewers in their thoughts about Allison. I hated her when she would not listen to her superiors and learn. I disliked her so much that I wanted her out of story line. She was a drag to other interesting people (I.e. Jonah and Mark); especially in one scene when she was in the prison too interview a prisoner and refused to stop talking and listen to a well respected interview that is world renown, Mark. Something so obvious but totally ignored by the Allison.
I liked that Mark knew he should stay clear of this woman while investigating, because of her youth and because of her being a rookie. He didn't. When he ditched those last three reasons, the story became stereotypical. Before that there was promise the author could rescue the heroine (a word I use loosely) character. I liked Mark's character when he was doing his job. He was interesting, cool, and dedicated. I liked his insights on bad guys without being a Sherlock Holmes guy.
I wished there was a bit more tidbits of the other Delphi characters so we know their lives are moving forward.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I like this series but they seem to be following a pattern. Professional woman get's romantically involved with lawman investigating the crime. Read morePublished 16 days ago by Amazon Customer
I have loved this entire tracers series except this one. It was creepy, dark and a hard read. This book left me with disturbing chills and regrets. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Serena
Allison Doyle is a Detective for the San Marcos police dept. Mark Wolfe is an FBI agent. They are brought together to investigate the murder of a young woman. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Beth Lechman
I've just started reading Ms.Griffin's books and love this series. I have now read 3 and enjoyed them all.Published 7 months ago by Terri Guy