Soul Circus

Soul CircusNow in paperback.

Also available as an eBook.

Winner of the 2003 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller.

In a world where crime is the rule and justice the exception, Derek Strange is the man many turn to. His private-detective firm, Strange Investigations, is the last resort for people trying to find some truth in a hard neighborhood.

When a local drug czar is jailed on murder charges and the prosecution is seeking the death penalty, Strange feels it's his responsibility to get to the bottom of the tangled loyalties behind the killing. But no one wants to talk to him or his partner, Terry Quinn. There's too much risk for anyone to speak up — except one young woman whose pride is stronger than her fear. With a deepening sense of loyalty and responsibility, Strange chases down the case into its most dangerous corners. Quinn pushes too, long past clear warning signs, drawing on his own ideas about manhood and trust. Doing whatever it takes to keep their witness alive, they crack the street's code of silence. And the secrets they uncover are explosive.

Populated with young men who think they're immortal, hard men who sell guns to both sides, and two of the most soulful and intriguing investigators in modern fiction, Soul Circus is another seething, straight-ahead, nonstop drama from the writer the Washington Post calls "the best of the new hard-boiled."

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George Pelecanos