John Sanford – Secret Prey (1998)

John Sanford’s Secret Prey introduces a female killer Audrey McDonald a small woman whose appearance deceives us.

Daniel S.Kresge, Susan O’Dell, James T.Bone, Terrance Robles and Wilson McDonald are out on a hunting trip, during which Kresge is murdered. Kresge is the chairman of the board, CEO and president of Polaris Bank System which is on the verge of a merger on which he stands to gain forty million dollars.

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Lucas, Shrake and his team are assigned the case and they suspect one among the rest might have murdered Kresge as they would all stand to gain the post of the CEO for the bank.

Wilson is a drunkard and mistreats his wife Audrey who puts up with his acts, saying he didnt intend to do it. When the voting for the CEO begins, O’Dell and Bone individually want to cut a deal with Wilson and somehow this goes haywire.

The police get a letter indicating that Wilson killed Kresge, the letter also mentions two people who might have bee possibly urdered by Wilson. They find out that the letter would have been written by a woman. Lucas gets a call from a lady who says the same and Lucas tries to find out the possible causes.

Lucas investigates on the names mentioned in the letter, a George Arris and a Andrew Ingall. He talks to Ingall’s widow and finds out that Andrew has died when his boat sank, which seemed to be sabotaged. After Andrew had died, the promotion he would have got went to Wilson. He finds out that Wilson even got George Arris’s promotion. Lucas focusses his investigation on Wilson.

Audrey goes to make an offer to Susan while Wilson goes to make an offer to Bone. After Audrey leaves Susan, Susan is killed and once again Lucas and his team investigate the remaining three. This time they talk to Audrey as well, and Lucas finds that her voice is similar to one who called and informed that Wilson murdered Kresge. Lucas finds out the domestic abuse Audrey faces.

Weather Karkinnen, who broke up with Lucas in the last novel is attacked one night by a firebomb. When Lucas gets to know this, he gets pretty angry and tries to find out what happened and finds that a similar incident happened to someone else. Later his best friend Elle Kruger is attacked.

Lucas talks to Hellen Bell, Audrey’s sister and gets to know that their parents were dead and he wants to know more and goes to her home town. There he finds the real character of Audrey.

How Lucas finds out Audrey’s true intentions and how he catches her forms the crux of the story. It’s a worth read, surely will keep you intrigued till the very end. You sure have to read the book to know more.

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