"You probably want to hear about Jennifer and the demons and how I played chicken with a freight train and—oh yeah—the weird murder and how I found out about it—you're definitely going to want to hear about that. But first, I have to tell you about the stupidest thing I ever did . . ."
Sam Hopkins is bored with his status as a preacher's kid. So when a group of guys notorious for being in trouble offers him friendship, he accepts. Before long, he has several new skills—including hot-wiring cars.
At school, there's an eccentric loner named Jennifer. When Sam defends her from being bullied, she begins to seek him out as her only friend. Her ramblings often seem illogical . . . but then start to contain grains of truth. One leads Sam to discover that one of his new friends has been killed. And then she tells him, "I'm looking for the devil." Sam doesn't know what that means, but he knows it's a matter of life and death that he figure it out.
Everyone else thinks Jennifer is suffering from schizophrenia. But Sam is starting to wonder if there could be something prophetic in her words. Discovering the truth is going to be both crazy and dangerous.
BOOK EXCERPT CHAPTER TEN
I had just come onto Maple Street, my street, only a couple of blocks from where I live. The afternoon was cloudy, gray, getting kind of dark kind of early. There was a wind rising and it looked like it was going to rain. This one stretch of Maple I was on was thick with trees, but there weren’t that many houses. With the sky getting dark and the dead winter branches swaying and whispering in the wind, it was a little bit spooky-looking.
Maybe it was just because of that, but I began to feel that somebody was watching me. I had that feeling you get, you know, on the back of your neck, when somebody stares at you from behind. I glanced over my shoulder, but there was nobody there.
I didn’t stop. I figured I was just letting myself get spooked. In spite of what Mark said, I guess I was still a little worried about Jeff, worried he might wait for me in some secluded spot—like this one—in order to take his revenge.
I rode a little faster the rest of the way home, even though my body was still aching like crazy from the beating.
When I got there, I walked around to the side of the house. There’s a broad alley of grass there and just at the end of it, at the corner of the house, there’s a little covered bike-port next to an old willow tree. It’s a deserted little corner. Getting dark now as the rain clouds moved in above. The willow tree waving and whispering in the wind. I still had that strange feeling that someone was watching me. I kept looking around me, but there was no one in sight.
I wheeled the bike into the port and locked it up. Then I turned to go into the house.
And there was Jennifer Sales, standing right next to me, staring.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Award winning author, screenwriter and media commentator Andrew Klavan is the author of such internationally bestselling novels as True Crime, filmed by Clint Eastwood, and Don’t Say A Word, filmed starring Michael Douglas. Andrew has been nominated for the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award five times and has won twice. His books have been translated around the world. His latest novel for adults, The Identity Man, has been praised by Nelson Demille as “fast paced, intelligent and thought-provoking; a great read!” Television and radio host Glenn Beck says “Andrew Klavan never disappoints…one of the best illustrations of the power of redemption that I’ve ever read.” His last novel Empire of Lies was about media bias in the age of terror, and topped Amazon.com’s thriller list. Andrew has also published a series of thrillers for young adults, The Homelanders, which follows a patriotic teenager’s battle against jihadists. The books have been optioned to be made into movies by Summit Entertainment, the team behind the mega-successful Twilight film series.
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