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Randall Wilkes, his big-city journalism career in ruins, has returned after twenty years to Pilgrim's Rest, the Tennessee hill town where he grew up. He has taken on a lucrative but low-prestige writing job for Sonny McMahan, a former governor and Randall's boyhood friend, whose own career is under a shadow and who needs a ghost-written autobiography to ease his way back into politics. Faye McMahan, Sonny's mother, is addled with age, imagining that her dead husband is alive and worrying that her son might be in danger. Amid a violent autumn storm, Randall finds Faye hideously murdered, hanged by the neck from a bridge over the town landmark called Damnation Falls. Within days, another person connected to the McMahan clan is murdered in an even more grisly fashion. And the bones of a third, long-buried murder victim - a young woman - have emerged from the earth.

Randall's ties to the victims force him to acknowledge debts that go back decades. Drawing on his investigative skills and his roots in the region, he sets out to discover who is behind the killings. His search takes him the length of the state - a land once split by civil war, where history lies close to the surface and tales of murder and betrayal weigh heavily on the town of Pilgrim's Rest. Before all the answers are in, more people will die, an old score will be settled, and the dead will finally tell their stories.

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Edward Wright

Ed Wright was an officer in the U.S. Navy aboard destroyers for three years. His first major career was journalism, and he worked as an editor at the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times.

At the Times, he specialized for several years in Middle East affairs and later was one of the senior editors on the foreign desk.

Ed's second career, fiction writing, led to the John Ray Horn mysteries, set in Los Angeles during the 1940s. The series has won four awards, including the Shamus Award and Britain’s Ellis Peters Historical Crime Award. He departed from the series with his next book, Damnation Falls, a contemporary mystery set in small-town Tennessee, which won the Barry Award.

» See more books by Edward Wright

Professionally Packed

All of our books that a have dust wrapper are covered in clear protective, removable film and are packed professionally in bubble wrap and a box for shipping so that they reach you in perfect condition.