At three in the morning on July 21, 2007, in Cheshire, Connecticut, two career criminals broke into the upscale, suburban home of Dr. William Petit, a prominent endocrinologist, and severely beat, molested, and ultimately murdered his wife and two young daughters.
When they went to sleep that night, Hayley, the seventeen year old, might well have been dreaming of starting Dartmouth, where she was headed in the fall; her eleven year-old sister, Michaela, was maybe messaging with classmates on Facebook. Jennifer, Petit’s wife, might well have been reading a novel in bed, all in protected calm and innocence, with no sense of what, hours later, lay in store.
The event always held a haunting grip on me– as it did for many of us who live in what we think are safe communities protected by our good fortune in life– and not so much as an author, but as a husband and father as well.
The fear of being unable to protect those you love. The horror of watching them bound and assaulted in front of you. Of being a witness to their horrible fates.
And somewhere, a person woke up that following morning, and catching the news, exclaimed in horror, “My God, I know that person. That was my close friend…”
That is what Ty Hauck wakes up to on the first morning of my new thriller, Reckless. The brutal murder of a friend from years before and her family. The wife of a successful investment manager. A person who was once there for him at a dark time in his own past.
And though Hauck has traded in his badge for a new role in a global security company, his friend’s murder draws him back to his old world. Not just to solve this heart-wrenching crime, and find out the truth where it leads.
But to avenge it. For her.
Of course, the trail does lead to broader and more horrifying things…
On March 16, 2008, I was flying home from a weekend in Florida, when a friend, who happened to be on the same plane and seated behind me, leaned forward and said in my ear: “Bear Sterns just collapsed!”
For me, these words, and the events that culminated six months later with the collapse of Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers and AIG, had much of the same powerful impact of watching the scenes of 9/11 unfold or the collapse of the Berlin Wall. An iconic world crumbling in front of your eyes. The unimaginable happening. History unfolding…
And I thought: what if everything that happened then —as well as the new world that followed– wasn’t simply the result of history’s impartial hand.
So RECKLESS is the story of these two worlds colliding. As in all my books, one world local, human, with tragic and emotional results. The other broader, conspiratorial– with billions of dollars at stake and consequences that affect us all.
And the force that always shakes them together is Ty Hauck. Dogged, undeterred, taking on the “quest” of an old friend into the viper’s nest of power and corruption. Always smart enough to find what he is chasing—though not smart enough to avoid trouble along the way.
A white knight for our times.
And in RECKLESS, he is free of his badge—and not just content to solve his friend’s murder, but to avenge it.
Hope I’ve given you a look into the new book. Have a great holiday. Next month, look forward to the first three chapters!