book cover of Dead for Life

Dead for Life

(2003)
(The fourth book in the Conrad Voort series)
A novel by

 
 
Amazon.com
Conrad Voort returns in a new outing for the NYPD Detective, whose birthday celebration is interrupted by a killer who's chosen the date of his first murder to remind Voort of his part in what proves to be a series of bewildering slayings. None of the victims seem to have anything in common, and although the killer leaves notes to Voort at every murder scene to nudge his memory, Conrad can't figure out what the connection to him is. All he knows is that the killer plans to kill four more people before midnight--and that his colleagues on the force are beginning to suspect that the detective knows more than he's telling. Forced to examine his entire life to learn what he's done to set the killer on his bloody path, Voort reveals facets of his character and history that illuminate the choices and consequences that led to this one-sided game of revenge. Dead for Life is a strong, well-told story with a protagonist who's consistently more interesting than the plots his creator cooks up for him. --Jane Adams

From Publishers Weekly
Memory is the tie that binds NYPD detective Conrad Voort and killer Wendall Nye in this evocative, New York City-steeped thriller (the fourth in Black's well-received series) revolving around questions of personal responsibility and unforeseen consequences. After murdering a beautiful travel agent, Nye leaves the following message: "YOUR FAULT CONRAD. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY. BIRTHDAY BOY. THREE MORE BY MIDNIGHT." Voort, the golden boy of an old New York family, has everything; Nye, a former high school teacher, has nothing-his life has been a shambles ever since a mysterious incident six years ago. What is the connection between the desperate killer and the "richest cop in New York"? Nye, as he continues his agenda of death, makes it clear that the blame for his spree stems directly from some past error on Voort's part. Battling the condemnation of his superiors, the suspicions of his fellow policemen and a media out for blood, Voort races through the city on the heels of the killer as the clock ticks and the body count climbs. The well-drawn backstory of Nye's terrible pain and loss-linked to city corruption and graft-is as compelling in its own way as Voort's history of family wealth and privilege. Black (All the Dead Were Strangers; The Broken Hearts Club; Irresistible) upends the standard conventions of good cop versus bad killer and in the process paints a vivid picture of day-to-day life in New York. Only a weak ending mars what is another strong performance by a crime writer who has created an unusual and realistically fallible police protagonist, one readers will follow for years to come.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist
Polite and (seemingly) compassionate Wendall Nye, who apparently runs his life based on advice gleaned from self-help books, guns down a travel agent. New York City detective Conrad Voort is called in when it turns out that this is to be the first of four homicides committed this day--all of which, according to a note left by the killer, are part of a plot to get revenge on Voort. But revenge for what? We know who the killer is--the author lets us see him--but Voort and his colleagues are in the dark. Can they discover the killer's identity before he completes his grisly mission? As in the three earlier Voort novels, Black keeps his hero on his toes, never letting him get too firm a grasp on the situation before he throws in another twist. Voort, who relies more on wits than firepower, is a joy to hang around with, and readers of hard-edged mysteries who haven't already discovered this series should quickly add it to their must-read lists. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Book Description
THE BIRTHDAY GIFT IS A DEAD STRANGER. THE CARD READS, "THREE MORE BY TONIGHT. YOUR FAULT." FOR DETECTIVE CONRAD VOORT, WHAT BEGINS AS A DAY OF CELEBRATION TURNS INTO A NIGHTMARE, AS HE TRIES TO STOP A KILLER AND FIGURE OUT IF HE COULD SOMEHOW BE RESPONSIBLE FOR A SERIES OF DEATHS.

In the thrilling, fast-paced, and haunting Dead for Life, Voort finds himself in a deadly race against time to stop an ingenious and unsettlingly sympathetic murderer who is intent on carrying out his threat, and who has created a state of near panic throughout Manhattan. What at first seems to be a series of random killings soon takes on a diabolical pattern. Murderer Wendell Nye is a man on a mission, and as his bloody endeavor unfolds it becomes clear that this is not merely the senseless act of some criminal mind, but the impassioned vengeance of a man who has suffered loss beyond endurance. Voort and the killer must reinvent themselves in this life-and-death struggle, battle the past, and become smarter, braver, and more daring -- all by tonight.

Since he first introduced the charismatic Conrad Voort in The Broken Hearts Club, critically acclaimed novelist Ethan Black has continued to shape the multifaceted detective into one of the most true-to-life and emotionally complex protagonists in contemporary suspense fiction. Voort's family members have been police officers in New York since the Dutch settled it. He has trained to be a detective since childhood, and he's head of a vast Voort cop clan. His code of honor dictates that on this day he may have to take himself down.

Drawing the reader ever more deeply into the minds and hearts of two unforgettable men pitted against each other, Dead for Life hurtles toward a shattering climax that will make it apparent that few things are what they seem. The price for past mistakes may be nothing less than life itself.

Genre: Mystery

Used availability for Bob Reiss's Dead for Life

Hardback Editions

May 2003 : USA Hardback
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Title: Dead for Life: A Novel (Black, Ethan)
Author(s): Ethan Black
ISBN: 0-7432-4400-1 / 978-0-7432-4400-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Paperback Editions

November 2007 : USA Paperback
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Title: Dead for Life: A Novel
Author(s): Ethan Black
ISBN: 1-4165-8575-3 / 978-1-4165-8575-6 (USA edition)
Publisher: Gallery Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


June 2004 : USA Mass Market Paperback
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Title: Dead for Life: A Novel
Author(s): Ethan Black
ISBN: 0-7434-6420-6 / 978-0-7434-6420-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Pocket Star
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Kindle Editions

May 2003 : USA, Canada Kindle edition
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Title: Dead for Life: A Novel
Author(s): Ethan Black
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA