A Jay Porter Novel
Prison-for-profit scheme thrusts insurance investigator into his disturbing past—and extreme danger
Jay Porter, the newest employee at NorthEastern Insurance in New Hampshire, is investigating a motor vehicle accident claim when he learns the teenager behind the wheel was arrested for minor drug possession and sentenced to a hardcore behavioral modification center.
At the county courthouse, Jay meets Nicki, a young college intern, who tips him off to a possible scandal—first-time juvenile offenders being shipped to private institutions for political kickbacks. He learns that long-time family nemeses, Adam and Michael Lombardi, may have a stake in the scheme.
Is Jay's mission to help these kids a legitimate crusade? Or is his thirst for revenge driven by the guilt he feels over his own junkie brother's death? These questions conspire to tear apart tranquility and drive a wedge between Jay and his wife Jenny.
With help from new friend Nicki, and a couple of old friends, Jay finds himself thrust back into a past he had hoped to leave behind, putting everything—and everyone he loves—at risk in pursuit of the truth.
Perfect for fans of noir fiction
While all of the novels in the Jay Porter Series stand on their own and can be read in any order, the publication sequence is:
Give Up the Dead
Rag and Bone
Clifford's harsh, emotionally raw sequel to 2014's Lamentation finds Jay Porter, now a New Hampshire insurance adjustor, suffering from the effects of his guilt and grief surrounding the "suicide by cop" of his junkie brother, Chris. Separated from his wife and son by his anger and heavy drinking, Jay is distracted from his personal problems by a court case involving a teenager who's arrested for minor drug possession and sent to a private behavioral modification detention facility. Jay investigates and learns that this questionable practice is widespread. Portrayals of the men trapped in the sea of toxic masculinity are spot on, though those of an opportunistic female clerk and the families bullied into sending their kids up the river ring much less true. Still, the deeply affecting essence of the book is really in Jay's struggle with managing his depression, rage, and panic attacks. Despite a bit of mental health care preachiness, Clifford has written a very human tale of redemption.