by James A. Ardaiz
From Pace Press.
A young assistant DA takes on an elusive serial killer and a flawed justice system in this gritty debut legal thriller, the first in a new series.
Assistant DA Matt Jamison is called to a meticulously staged crime scene on a canal bank in rural Central California — the latest in a series of murders that have killed three young women in one month. A serial killer is on the loose and adept at hiding his tracks. And before the murderer can be brought to justice, Jamison will lose his illusions about what justice means.
As a fourth victim is abducted and investigators race against time, Jamison must cope with a sophisticated and evasive killer, a politically-minded sheriff eager to claim credit and spread blame, and mounting pressure to resolve a high-profile case.
The stakes get higher when Jamison brings a shaky prosecution to court and must manage an arrogant defense attorney, a smoothly lying defendant and a fragile witness. And while Jamison struggles to convict a murderer, events outside his control will test his trust in the justice system and the fallible human beings who operate it.
Written by a former investigator, prosecutor and judge who intimately knows the world of attorneys, detectives and men who kill, Fractured Justice crackles with authenticity, realistically depicting the lives of the all-too-human people who enforce the law and the messy compromises they make in their work.
Featuring an intricate plot, a chillingly sophisticated villain, a dogged and determined protagonist and a clear-eyed assessment of how the justice system operates, Fractured Justice is a gripping, fast-paced and coldly realistic thriller — and a stunning debut novel by a remarkable new mystery writer.
Audience: Legal thriller and mystery readers.
About the Author: James A. Ardaiz is a former prosecutor, judge and Presiding Justice of the California Fifth District Court of Appeal. Ardaiz’s first book was Hands Through Stone , a nonfiction account of his investigation and prosecution of murderer Clarence Ray Allen, the last man executed by the State of California.
$16.95 US • Trade Paperback • 6″ x 9″ • 350 pages
by Richard Armstrong
The Mafia comes to Comic-Con and outrageousness ensues, in the new fast-paced suspense caper The Don Con.
A hilarious comic crime thriller in the tradition of Carl Hiaasen and Janet Evanovich, The Don Con. mixes suspense, razor-sharp pop culture satire and author Richard Armstrong’s dry comic style into a delightful cocktail of pure entertainment.
Joey Volpe hit the high watermark of his acting career when he played a small role as a mobster on The Sopranos. If you blinked, you missed it.
But now he’s unemployed, broke and forced to make a living by signing autographs at pop-culture fan conventions, or “Fan-Cons,” for $35 a pop. His lack of income, along with his chronic womanizing, has put his marriage at risk, too.
Joey’s life gets even worse when real mobster Tony Rosetti shows up in the autograph line with a plan to rob the next Fan-Con — an offer Joey can’t refuse. When the heist goes awry, Joey is left with a beef with Rosetti and two long years to plan.
Partnered with a smooth-talking con man, Joey is using all his acting skills on new projects: Revenge. Money. And saving his marriage.
Combining the intrigue of Ocean’s 11 and The Bank Job with pointed comic takes on The Sopranos, The Godfather, Comic-Con, Star Trek, The Sting and nerd culture, The Don Con. is a crime thriller / screwball comedy that will leave readers breathless with excitement and laughter.
Audience: Crime thriller / mystery readers, humor readers and pop culture fans.
About the Author: Richard Armstrong has been a freelance advertising copywriter for more than forty years. His previous books include Leaving the Nest: The Complete Guide to Living on Your Own; The Next Hurrah: The Communications Revolution in American Politics; and the world’s only novel about direct mail, God Doesn’t Shoot Craps. Armstrong’s articles have appeared in National Review, Washingtonian Magazine, Advertising Age and many other publications. He lives with his wife Sharon and his dachshund Stardust in Washington, DC.
$14.95 U.S. • Trade Paperback • 5¼” x 8″ • 270 pages
by James A. Ardaiz
Publication Date: November 5, 2019
$18.95 US • Trade Paperback • 6″ x 9″ • 360 pages
Reopening a cold murder case uncovers disturbing secrets and forces a young prosecutor to an agonizing decision in the gritty, fast-paced, and coldly realistic new legal thriller Shades of Truth.
Written by a former prosecutor and judge who intimately knows the world of attorneys, detectives and criminals, Shades of Truth crackles with authenticity and a propulsive hard-boiled story.
When rapidly rising assistant DA Matt Jamison is assigned to convicted murderer Rick Harker’s habeas corpus hearing, it hardly seems worth his trouble. Everyone knows that Harker was guilty. Twenty-six years ago he murdered Lisa Farrow and set her body on fire. Lisa’s three-year-old daughter Christine identified Harker as the murderer, and he’s been in San Quentin ever since. The only mystery about the case is why the original trial judge didn’t give Harker the death sentence he richly deserved.
But now the adult Christine Farrow is recanting her testimony, handing Jamison a case that will test his character and his convictions. While Harker’s idealistic attorney demands a new trial, Jamison retraces the original investigation, trying to find if there is any doubt of Harker’s guilt.
Jamison’s investigation leads him deep into the past lives of people who want to stay hidden: Mike Jensen, the lead detective on the original case, now an ailing alcoholic clinging to past glory and resentful of any insinuation he got it wrong; Christine Farrow, deeply traumatized by childhood tragedy and possibly the victim of an unscrupulous therapist; Clarence Foster, the low-level career criminal who identified Harker as the killer; and Jamison’s own dead father, a famous defense attorney mysteriously involved in the Harker case.
As Jamison gets closer to learning the truth behind Harker’s conviction, his investigators and friends repeatedly warn him to stop before he discovers a secret that might end his high-flying career. When Jamison finds evidence of corruption in the DA’s office he is faced with a stark dilemma: Is exposing the truth worth the damage?
Audience: Legal thriller and mystery readers.
About the Author: James A. Ardaiz is a former prosecutor, judge and Presiding Justice of the California Fifth District Court of Appeal. Ardaiz’s previous books include Fractured Justice, the first Matt Jamison legal thriller, and Hands Through Stone, a nonfiction account of Ardaiz’s investigation and prosecution of murderer Clarence Ray Allen, the last man executed by the State of California.