cover image The OC: A Jake Longly Thriller

The OC: A Jake Longly Thriller

D.P. Lyle. Oceanview, $26.95 (304p) ISBN 978-1-60809-460-8

Edgar finalist Lyle’s sparkling fifth Jake Longly thriller (after 2020’s Rigged) takes the cheerful Alabama investigator, who describes himself as an “ex-pro baseball player, restaurant/bar owner, and lover of women,” and the woman he loves, Nicole Jamison, to Orange County, Calif., to watch preparations for filming a screenplay by Nicole based on an actual Hollywood murder case. At a restaurant, they meet Nicole’s TV newscaster friend, Megan Weatherly, who tells them she’s been receiving disturbing emails from an anonymous fan. When the messages become more threatening and are accompanied by gifts such as a dozen dead roses, Jake and Nicole summon serious help—first, their gargantuan, tech-savvy buddy Pancake Jeffers, then Jake’s grimly serious PI father, Ray. The tension rises as it becomes clear the stalker is someone close to Megan who’s eagerly looking forward to terrorizing, torturing, and killing her. There’s little doubt, though, that Jake, Nicole, and company will catch the culprit before too much harm is done. Snappy patter lifts this bright look at a dark subject. Lyle should win new fans with this one. Agent: Kimberly Cameron, Kimberly Cameron & Assoc. (Oct.)