Skin Game: A Herman Jackson Mystery
Bail bondsman Herman Jackson has no illusions about his clientele. He knows a good risk from a bad one, and he knows who should never be bonded out in the first place. Take Ray Valento, who has tortured and killed numerous women in a string of attacks going back years. Somehow, he has always managed to avoid conviction, but to Herman, a man like that obviously belongs behind bars. And if Valento's court-appointed lawyer won't use the word evil, Herman definitely will. Herman can't make a living refusing to write bonds, but at least he can keep the world safe from Valento. That is, until somebody uses Herman's name and license to bond the killer out anyway. And not too surprisingly, Valento immediately flees. Trying to track him down gets Herman nowhere except the hospital, suffering a severe head injury and recurring blackouts. And Valento's lawyer is no help--she's missing and presumed dead, along with several other young women. Chasing Valento leads Herman across the frozen waters of Lake Superior, into the offices of the FBI and the St. Paul Police, to a warehouse full of kidnapped women, and again and again into the back streets and dark alleys of St. Paul's old, not-quite-gentrified, industrial area known as Lowertown. With the help of his bounty hunter friend, Wide Track Wilkie, his faithful secretary Agnes, and the crazy hacker known as The Prophet, Herman pursues his most perilous case yet.
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