Federal Chief Investigator Nick LeRue is an expert on unraveling a crime; he's brought down some of the smoothest operators on Capitol Hill and uncovered dangerous secrets in politicians' pasts. In his personal life, however, his commitment to his job has left him unlucky in love. When his ex-girlfriend, investigative journalist Heather Cole, appears after a long period of silence, things start looking up. But Nick is about to learn that nothing is ever what it seems.
Surprisingly, the woman who approaches Nick isn't his ex at all, but her twin sister, Melanie Cole. The two sisters share an unusually strong bond, one that allows them to sense when the other is in danger and even visit one another in their dreams. Melanie has been seeing images of her sister being held captive by an unseen man; somehow she knows that time is running out for Heather.
Though skeptical of the sisters' connection, Nick follows Heather's trail to Pushmataha, Mississippi. It appears that she was close to uncovering the town's darkest and bloodiest secret---the beating and lynching of a young black man in the 1955 when she mysteriously vanished. A photograph of the event reveals that all but two of the mob have already died. One of the survivors is Jeb Rogge, the town's most powerful and dangerous man. But why would Jeb get involved in a crime that would obviously point to him?
The town's residents seem to know something they're not telling Nick, and Melanie's dreams are becoming more and more intense. As more and more of the pieces fly together, it becomes all too clear that whoever has covered up the racial murder is willing to keep it hidden at any cost, even if it means killing again.
Combining an intense paranormal thriller with edge-of-your seat mystery fiction, Pete Earley's The Big Secret will keep you guessing until the unbelievable end.
At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
Edgar-winning true crime writer Earley (The Hothouse, etc.) delivers a fast-paced but uneven fiction debut. U.S. Senate investigator Nick LeRue spends most of his time vetting nominees for federal judgeships that is, until he's contacted by Melanie Cole, who wants him to track down her twin, Heather, a reporter who's vanished from the small Mississippi town where she'd gone to research a 1955 lynching. LeRue agrees, mainly because he still loves Heather, who broke his heart two years ago when she took up with investigative reporter Andrew Middleton. LeRue and Melanie learn that Heather has been kidnapped, possibly by one of the white supremacists involved in the lynching. LeRue's investigative savvy paired with Melanie's ability to communicate in dreams with her twin lead to the discovery that Heather is captive in a remote cabin. But before they can get to her, her captor kills her and then, apparently, himself. But is that the end of the story? The action shifts back to Washington, D.C., where a Southern senator and Middleton a sort of fictionalized Bob Woodward character fall under suspicion for Heather's death. Here, Earley's narrative takes a series of credibility-straining turns, including key characters who turn out to be delusional and dream sequences that herald events to come. LeRue, however, remains a well-conceived protagonist, full of honor, cunning and a fine sense of self-deprecating humor.