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On their second honeymoon, a woman's husband is arrested for murderGriselda Satterlee is beginning to regret her second marriage to Con. Their honeymoon was supposed to be joyous, romantic, and full of glamor--all of the things their first marriage wasn't--but instead they are spending it on Long Beach, a Navy town whose fleets have all shipped out to sea. The tedium of Long Beach cannot compare to the insult Con gives Griselda one night, when he picks up a stunning blonde at a bar, leaving his wife in the dust. When he returns to their hotel, Con explains to Griselda that the woman was planning to shoot herself, so he took her out of the bar to confiscate her gun. Griselda is just beginning to believe him when the blonde turns up dead, and Con is arrested for her murder. Griselda will have to work quickly to salvage their honeymoon, or Con will be forced to trade their bridal suite for death row.
In El Paso, a ranch hand falls for a dangerous gringaJose Aragon looks like a cowboy and, to his disgust, smells like one too. In El Paso between jobs, he's standing outside the Chenoweth Hotel, praying for a room, a shower, and a couple of ice cold beers. Instead, he finds a woman: a sandy-haired, wealthy beauty named Dulcinda Farrar. Mistaking him for ordinary border-town trash, she offers him a few bucks to pick up a package for her. Jose plays along, thinking it will be a lark to pull one over on the beautiful Yankee. But his sense of humor is about to get him into trouble. Five minutes after he picks up Dulcinda's package, it vanishes, and the border's toughest thugs are hot on his trail. Jose is an expert when it comes to roping steer, but he will find that an upper class blonde is more dangerous than the wildest bull.
Alone in New York City, a young actress becomes entangled in an international caperLizanne Steffasson used to dream of life on the Broadway stage--that is, until she came crashing down to Earth. Having decided to aim lower, she dreams simply of being able to pay her rent--which is why she responds to a strange ad in the newspaper: "Wanted: A beautiful girl. One not afraid to look on danger's bright face." Lizanne is neither beautiful nor fearless, and she's about to come face-to-face with a most fearful danger indeed. When the Swedish billionaire known as the Cross-Eyed Bear died, he left his three sons' inheritance in a trust, to be collected when the youngest turned twenty-one. But just before his birthday, the youngest son disappeared into the wilds of New York. Now, the estate lawyer wants Lizanne's help finding him. Lizanne knows more of the story than her new employer realizes--and she cannot trust anyone if she is to come through the mission alive.
To stop a Communist plot, a secretive man searches Los Angeles for a confidential reportWhen bad weather forces his flight to Los Angeles to land outside of town, Steve Wintress agrees to share a car with three of his fellow travelers: a timid young soldier, a powerful Justice Department official, and a taciturn Hollywood beauty. They don't know it yet, but all four strangers have something in common--and one of them might kill to get it. A Communist defector has smuggled the priceless Davidian report out of East Berlin, and every secret agency in the world wants to get its hands on it. The report is somewhere in Los Angeles, and Steve will have to battle the CIA, FBI, and the Communist Party to secure it for himself. As he knows all too well, in a game like this, the last thing you should trust is a friendly face.
To prevent another war, a diplomat hides from enemies of peaceTwelve years after the Second World War ended, America's war efforts have been replaced by those of the Peace Department, whose chief responsibility is to oversee the police force that governs Germany. On the eve of the biennial Peace Conclave in New York, rumors are swirling that the force may be withdrawn, and the Germans allowed free reign once again. Only the secretary of peace stands in the way of this controversial plan--that is, until he's murdered. His deputy, Piers Hunt, is the only man in the diplomatic corps who knows of his superior's death. Fearing a similar fate, he arrives in New York incognito, racing against those who would once again plunge the world into global conflict. Piers is a man of peace, but for the sake of his beliefs, he may be forced to get blood on his hands.
On a transcontinental train, a starlet fears her director may be trying to kill herFour years after she arrived in Los Angeles, Kitten Agnew has become a star. Though beautiful and talented, she'd be nowhere without Vivien Spender: Hollywood's most acclaimed director--and its most dangerous. But Kitten knew what she was getting into when she got involved with him; she had heard the stories of Viv's past discoveries: Once he discarded them, they ended up in a chorus line, a sanatorium, or worse. She knows enough of his secrets that he wouldn't dare destroy her career. But he may be willing to kill her. On a train from Los Angeles to Chicago, Kitten learns that Viv is planning to offer her roommate a part that was meant for her. If she lets him betray her, her career will be over. But fight for the part, and she will be fighting for her life as well.
"It was surprising what old experiences remembered could do to a presumably educated, civilized man." And Hugh Denismore, a young doctor driving his mother's Cadillac from Los Angeles to Phoenix, is eminently educated and civilized. He is privileged, would seem to have the world at his feet, even. Then why does the sight of a few redneck teenagers disconcert him? Why is he reluctant to pick up a disheveled girl hitchhiking along the desert highway? And why is he the first person the police suspect when she is found dead in Arizona a few days later?Dorothy B. Hughes ranks with Raymond Chandler and Patricia Highsmith as a master of mid-century noir. In books like In a Lonely Place and Ride the Pink Horse she exposed a seething discontent underneath the veneer of twentieth-century prosperity. With The Expendable Man, first published in 1963, Hughes upends the conventions of the wrong-man narrative to deliver a story that engages readers even as it implicates them in the greatest of all American crimes.
An escapee from a Spanish prison hunts for his best friend's killer in New YorkFor more than a year, Kit McKittrick languishes in a Fascist prison, his days spent in darkness and his nights tortured by fear of his limping jailer, whose name he never learns. He escapes Spain with the help of Louie Lepetino, a childhood friend who came with him to fight on behalf of the Republican cause. Back in the United States, Kit heads out West to recover from his ordeal, while Louie returns to a life of cafés and cocktail parties in New York. But Kit's convalescence is cut short when he learns Louie has taken a fatal tumble out of a window, and he journeys to New York to discover who gave his savior the final push. Only a woman could have led Louie to his death, Kit thinks, and New York is full of femmes fatales. But man or woman, Louie's murderer should watch out for Kit: He wants vengeance, and he's willing to kill for it.
Dixon Steel is a serial killer who lures young women because he seems like an average, trustworthy guy. He soon finds himself matching wits with his best friend from the war, who is now a police detective. Brub suspects nothing at first, and Dix is welcom in his home and meets his wife, Sylvia. Then Dix becomes acquainted with a new neighbor, lovely would-be actress Laurel gray, and he's sure he's found the woman of his dreams. still, things seem to go wrong and slip out of his control as dix tries to foil the cops and hang on to his love. Will he find safety and happiness, or lose everything? This book is a suspenseful, well-crafted, and heartbreaking thriller. It inspired an excellent film starring Humphrey bogart and Gloria Graham. reading the thriller and then seeing the movie is fascinating, because many changes were made between one and the other.
Lost in New York, a GI stumbles upon a nest of peculiar GermansPrivate First Class Johnnie Brown has only two days to spend in New York before he ships out to fight the Nazis. While his fellow soldiers amuse themselves at the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the night clubs of Times Square, Johnnie has a humbler wish: to ride the subway. But no sooner has he paid his nickel than he detects something peculiar: a stout, mysterious man speaking German. Sensing espionage, Johnnie follows the German to a posh townhouse, where he finds more excitement than any cabaret can offer. Within minutes, he has lost his clothes, his dignity, and his sense of direction. But Johnnie is a devoted servant of Uncle Sam, and will not rest until every one of the townhouse's secrets have been stripped as naked as he is.
During Fiesta, three desperate men converge in a perilous New Mexico townIt takes four days for Sailor to travel to New Mexico by bus. He arrives broke, sweaty, and ready to get what's his. It's the annual Fiesta, and the locals burn an effigy of Zozobra so that their troubles follow the mythical character into the fire. But for former senator Willis Douglass, trouble is just beginning. Sailor was Willis's personal secretary when his wife died in an apparent robbery-gone-wrong. Only Sailor knows it was Willis who ordered her murder, and he's agreed to keep his mouth shut in exchange for a little bit of cash. On Sailor's tail is a cop who wants the senator for more than a payoff. As Fiesta rages on, these three men will circle one another in a dance of death, as they chase truth, money, and revenge.
Handed a mysterious package, a woman finds herself caught in a deadly gameHer name is not Eliza Williams. A fashionable young woman with a taste for adventurous men, she made the mistake of falling in love with Towner Clay--a New York City playboy whose international jetsetting conceals dangerous secrets. On Towner's behalf, she has spent six months pretending to be Eliza Williams, a dowdy Midtown secretary. It's dull work until the day Gavin Keane, a blue-eyed associate of Towner's, leaves her with a mysterious package. Eliza understands that protecting it is a question of life and death. When he comes to pick up the package that night, Gavin is followed, and he shoots the man to protect the parcel's secret. With blood on her carpet and a mystery on her hands, the woman who is not Eliza will have to act quickly to survive.
An actress finds herself caught between her ex-husband and a pair of murderous twinsAt the age of twenty-four, Griselda Satterlee has already lived two lifetimes. A star of the silver screen, she gives up Hollywood after a year, and moves to New York to become a designer. While her ex-husband, Con, is out of town, she is staying in his apartment. Walking back one night, she meets two cheerful young men who want to go home with her--and won't take no for an answer. David and Danny are twins, and they are the most beautiful men Griselda has ever seen. They are also the most dangerous. They want something from her: a lustrous blue marble, which they insist is in Con's apartment. Though they leave without hurting her, Griselda knows that next time, they won't be so amiable. To save herself, she must discover the secret of the marble--a secret with death at its core.