An electrifying mystery featuring a troubled small-town police detective faced with three interwoven crimes that reveal sinister secrets about his community–and the deaths of his family, by the Edgar Award-and Thriller Award- short-listed author whose novels have been described by the New York Times Book Review as “pretty much perfect.”
In the years since the mysterious deaths of his wife and child, P.T. Marsh, a police detective in the small Georgia town of Mason Falls, has faced demons–both professional and personal. But when he is called to the scene of a school shooting, the professional and personal become intertwined, and he suspects that whoever is behind the crime may be connected to his own family tragedy.
As Marsh and his partner Remy investigate the shooting, they discover that it is far from straightforward, and their search for answers leads them to a conspiracy at the highest levels of local government–including within the police force. The stakes in the case become increasingly high, culminating in a showdown that has Marsh questioning everything he knows, and wondering if some secrets are better left undiscovered.
One of the New York Times Book Review’s Top Ten Best Crime Novels of 2020
“[McMahon] tells his story with flair.”–New York Times Book Review
The author of The Good Detective delivers a gripping and atmospheric new novel in which a cop takes on a harrowing case and confronts old personal demons.
What if the one good thing you did in your life doomed you to die?
A hard-nosed real estate baron is dead, and detectives P.T. Marsh and Remy Morgan learn there’s a long list of suspects. Mason Falls, Georgia, may be a small town, but Ennis Fultz had filled it with professional rivals, angry neighbors, and a wronged ex-wife. And when Marsh realizes that this potential murder might be the least of his troubles, he begins to see what happens when ordinary people become capable of evil.
As Marsh and Morgan dig into the case, it becomes clear that Fultz’s death was not an isolated case of revenge. It may be part of a dark web of crimes connected to an accident that up-ended Marsh’s life a couple years earlier–and that now threatens the life of a young child. Marsh veers dangerously off track as his search for clues becomes personal..and brings him to a place where a man’s good deeds turn out to be more dangerous than his worst crimes.
A New York Times Book Review Top 10 Crime Novel of the Year
“John McMahon is one of those rare writers who seem to have sprung out of nowhere. His first novel, The Good Detective, which is pretty much perfect, features a decent if flawed hero battling personal troubles while occupied with a murder case of great consequence to his community.”–New York Times Book Review
Introducing Detective P.T. Marsh in a swift and bruising debut where Elmore Leonard’s staccato prose meets Greg Iles’ Southern settings.
How can you solve a crime if you’ve killed the prime suspect?
Since the night his wife and son were killed in an accident, Detective P.T. Marsh can’t see the line between bold moves and disastrous decisions. But when the former rising star of the Mason Falls, Georgia, police force decides to help out a woman by giving her abusive boyfriend a taste of his own medicine, he might have crossed a line. The next morning he gets called to the scene of his newest murder case, and is stunned to arrive at the house of a dead man, the very man he beat up the night before. As P.T. and his partner, Remy, begin to suspect the murder is connected to a local arson and the lynching of a teenage boy, P.T. realizes he might have killed the top suspect of this horrific crime.
Amid rising racial tension and media scrutiny, P.T. uncovers something even deeper beneath the boy’s murder–a conspiracy leading all the way back to the time of the Civil War. Risking everything to unravel the puzzle even as he fights off his own demons, P.T. races headlong toward an incendiary and life-altering showdown.