Collecting Cooper: A Thriller (Christchurch Noir Crime Series)
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From the international bestselling author of Blood Men comes a gripping new thriller that paints a brutally vivid picture of a killer's mind.
People are disappearing in Christchurch. Cooper Riley, a psychology professor, doesn’t make it to work one day. Emma Green, one of his students, doesn’t make it home. When ex-cop Theodore Tate is released from a four-month prison stint, he’s asked by Green’s father to help find Emma. After all, Tate was in jail for nearly killing her in a Dui accident the year before, so he owes him. Big time. What neither of them knows is that a former mental patient is holding people prisoner as part of his growing collection of serial killer souvenirs. Now he has acquired the ultimate collector’s item—an actual killer.
Meanwhile, clues keep pulling Tate back to Grover Hills, the mental institution that closed down three years ago. Very bad things happened there. Those who managed to survive would prefer keeping their memories buried. Tate has no choice but to unearth Grover Hills’ dark past if there is any chance of finding Emma Green and Cooper Riley alive.
For fans of Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island, Thomas Harris’ Silence of the Lambs, and Jeff Lindsay’s Dexter series, Collecting Cooper is another “relentlessly gripping, deliciously twisted, and shot through with a vein of humor that’s as dark as hell” (Mark Billingham) novel by this glimmering new talent in the crime thriller genre.
been slapped by anybody in her seventeen years on this earth. Her head twists to the side and her cheek is burning. Then his hands are on her chest, at first she thinks he’s trying to feel her up, but then he’s shoving her and the stars come into view and swirl overhead, and her back is hitting the pavement, her hands behind her breaking the fall. The car door slams shut. The engine starts. He winds the window down and shouts something else at her before pulling away, but she doesn’t hear him
squinting to look at me because the sun is in his face but on my back. He’s wearing a T-shirt and shorts and not a suit, so he’s not here in any lawyering capacity, which means I won’t have to take out a second mortgage to talk to him. He looks like he’s slept in that shirt for the last few days. “I don’t need the work,” I tell him. “Yes you do.” “It’s a moot point. I lost my PI license so I can’t help you.” “That works out okay because I won’t be paying you. You’ll be doing this for free so
find Emma Green alive and well. That’s the goal. That’s the frame of mind I’m going to keep. Yesterday was hot and today is even hotter. There are no clouds in the sky and if there were they’d probably catch fire. Mother Nature is holding her breath because there isn’t the slightest hint of any breeze. Smoke hangs to the south over the Port Hills, blazing scrub fires turning the sky out there gray. Last night I left the rental in the driveway and I suffer for that now, the steering wheel hot to
says. “Almost three years ago. April through to May. Five weeks in total.” “I need to get a look at names and faces of his students from that year.” “Why?” “Please, it’s important. We’re trying to save Cooper’s life,” I tell her. “Is it true his house was burned down?” “It’s true.” “There are hundreds of students from three years ago,” she tells me. I need to check them all for the arsonist, but that can wait till Schroder gets here. “Just the female ones.” “I guess I can print them out,”
psychology, where she entered Cooper Riley’s class. One and a half months after joining his class, she dropped out. At the same time Cooper Riley took five weeks off work. I do the arithmetic. Melissa X in the video I saw would have been around twenty-six years old. She looked a little older, but maybe she has an old soul. I get tired of waiting in the hall, and my leg is hurting from all the walking, and in the end I decide there’s no harm in waiting in Cooper’s office. I sit down behind the