Penzler Pick, April 2002: In this latest thriller from Alan Russell, the hero, or maybe I should say the antihero, is Graham Wells, a transplanted Englishman who is a successful paparazzo. He has learned all of the dirty tricks of his trade--the stakeouts, the subterfuge, the lying--anything and everything that will get him closer to his subject as he invades privacy in order to get the pictures which he sells for thousands of dollars to the tabloids. And, as Wells points out, who among us does not like looking at those pictures?

Then, in an instant, everything goes wrong for Wells. While stalking two high-profile celebrities in Paris, he accidentally causes their deaths during a high-speed car chase. If that sounds familiar, it is probably meant to. Wells panics, drives away from the scene, destroys the car he was driving, and makes his cowardly way back to the United States. But he is not in the clear.

Wells is approached by a CIA operative who tells him that what he has done is known, but will remain a secret if Wells agrees to do some work for the CIA. That work turns out to be destroying the reputations of certain celebrities. Wells has no idea why he's asked to do this and he doesn't care as long as his shameful secret is not revealed.

Wells is contacted by an acquaintance he met at a party. She tells him that Lanie Byrne, one of Hollywood's biggest stars, is going to be alone at her house for the weekend. The acquaintance works for Lanie and this is the second weekend in a row Lanie has given her staff the weekend off. The buzz is that Lanie is entertaining a high-profile lover and Wells's acquaintance wants a cut of any fee he gets for the photographs. Wells can't resist, and what he sees when he photographs Lanie Byrne will change his life.

He sees a woman in despair, intent on committing suicide as she drinks and pops pills. Wells saves her--an act that catapults him into a nightmare where losing his reputation is nothing compared to losing his life.

Because of the work he does, Graham Wells is a hard character to like, but it is impossible not to root for him as he battles unknown forces and begins to redeem himself, at least in the eyes of the reader. --Otto Penzler



Praise for this book

"Alan Russell is in rare form with Exposure." - Michael Connelly


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Used availability for Alan Russell's Exposure

Hardback Editions

May 2002 : USA Hardback
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Title: Exposure: A Novel
Author(s): Alan Russell
ISBN: 0-312-28924-3 / 978-0-312-28924-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

April 2015 : USA Paperback
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
ISBN: 1-4778-2747-1 / 978-1-4778-2747-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Audio Editions

April 2015 : USA Audio CD
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
ISBN: 1-5012-2804-8 / 978-1-5012-2804-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


April 2015 : USA MP3 CD
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
ISBN: 1-5012-2825-0 / 978-1-5012-2825-4 (USA edition)
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


April 2015 : USA Audio edition
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   


April 2015 : Canada Audio edition
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon CA   


April 2015 : UK Audio edition
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

April 2015 : USA, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Exposure
Author(s): Alan Russell
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA