In R. J. Ellory’s THE ANNIVERSARY MAN, John Costello is sixteen when his life changes irrevocably. An unidentified assailant brutally attacks him and his girlfriend, Nadia, and although John survives, something in his soul has been shattered. Twenty-two years pass; he has somehow moved on and works as a researcher for a New York daily newspaper. He has his quirks, including a case of OCD, a tendency towards reclusiveness, and an encyclopedic knowledge of and fascination with serial killers. John’s past comes back to haunt him when a copycat starts replicating old crimes. As the number of dead bodies climbs, the police are under enormous pressure to identify and stop the perpetrator.
R. J. Ellory’s A QUIET BELIEF IN ANGELS is the heartrending story of Joseph Vaughn, a boy who grows up under an unlucky star. The narrator is only eleven when his thirty-seven year old father, Earl, dies in 1939, leaving him and his impoverished young mother to fend for themselves. Earl’s death leaves Joseph and his mother deeply shaken. The boy is further traumatized when a classmate is found dead, after having been stripped, beaten, and assaulted by an unknown perpetrator. This girl’s murder is just the first in a long string of calamities that will dog Augusta Falls, Georgia, where Joseph and his mother live. The specter of death constantly haunts this tragic tale of hopes dashed and innocent lives snuffed out prematurely.