Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Every marriage has a secret, but this one is deadly - Vigilante Assassin (Jake Wolfe #2) by Mark Nolan

"There is a beauty in the work that Jake does, he is honorable even when he is asked to assassinate someone. There is humor in his interactions with other law enforcement officials and there is honesty in his actions. He is a good man and these books would make outstanding movies. " Vicki, Goodreads


Vigilante Assassin (#2)

Every marriage has a secret, but this one is deadly. Lauren Stephens wakes up to find her husband, Gene, has vanished during the night. His phone is dead. Desperate, she hires Jake Wolfe and his war dog, Cody. They search the house and discover something so disturbing that Jake won’t allow Lauren near it. “No, if you see this, there is no unseeing it.”

Lauren thought she had it all: a loving partner, two great kids, a successful business, and a beautiful home in the San Francisco hills. But all of that is about to come crashing down, due to a missing husband, a hidden past, and a frightening secret that will shock a trusting wife to the core. Gene has enemies, and now they want something from Lauren.

Jake Wolfe is a flawed man who has a habit of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. He wants to leave his secret, violent past behind him, but when Lauren and her children are threatened, his protective instinct takes command. Jake soon finds himself involved in a dangerous conspiracy, targeted for death, and engaged in battle with a powerful, unseen group who will stop at nothing to get what they want.

Jake’s going to have to think fast and fight hard to protect Cody, Lauren and her kids.

Vigilante Assassin is “Jake Wolfe book two” in the ongoing series. It can be read as a stand-alone, or you can start with book one, titled: Dead Lawyers Don’t Lie. 

Both of these Kindle Unlimited books in the Jake Wolfe mystery thriller novel series are available to read for free with your subscription to Kindle Unlimited. 


Pacific Heights, San Francisco

Lauren Stephens awoke before dawn with a sense of deep foreboding. She reached out to her husband, but Gene wasn’t beside her.

She went to the kitchen and saw that he’d brewed a pot of coffee. She poured two cups and carried them to Gene’s study, thinking he might be in there trading stock options online. It would be good to have coffee and a few minutes of conversation alone with her man before they both went to work.

Gene wasn’t in the study, though the lights were on. Lauren smelled something unusual—something vaguely disturbing. She wasn’t sure what it could be or where it was coming from.

Had he already left for work? No, he usually ate breakfast with the kids—and anyway he would have sent her a text message if he’d needed to leave the house without saying goodbye. She checked her phone; no new texts from him. Where was he?

She walked down the hallway, and opened the door to the garage. His SUV was still there.

Maybe he’d gone for a walk in the dark before breakfast. He’d never done that before, but there was a first time for everything. She checked the alarm system, but the digital screen showed that the alarm had stayed on all night, just like always. She blew out a breath. Gene had to be inside the house—but where?

She called his phone and it went to voicemail. Anxiety rising, she took deep breaths the way she’d been told to by her therapist. Her fears might be irrational, but ever since she’d become what some people called “rich and famous,” due to her successful clothing company, she’d been getting hate email and online death threats from stalkers and trolls. It had made her paranoid, afraid to be in her own home, and she’d insisted on having an alarm system installed.

After the calming breaths, she called him again. This time she left a voicemail. “Gene, where are you? I’m getting worried.” She wanted to raise her voice, but the kids were still sleeping.

The children!

Fear coursing through her veins, she ran down the hallway and threw open the door to her nine-year-old daughter’s room. She found Chrissy in bed sound asleep, snuggled up with her softball glove instead of the teddy bear she’d favored for so long. Lauren closed the door with a sigh of relief and went to the next room. She watched her son, Ben, her six-year-old, turn over in bed and mumble something in his sleep. He was a sensitive child with an active imagination and was probably dreaming about the bedtime story she’d read to him the night before.

Maybe Gene had been sleepwalking, and had fallen down and hit his head. Or maybe he’d had a heart attack or a stroke. He might be on a bathroom floor in need of medical help. She wrung her hands and wondered for the umpteenth time why they had bought this mansion. Who needed all these extra rooms they never used?

She searched the house. First, their bedroom. Gene’s favorite shoes were still in his closet, but his house slippers were not. She didn’t find his wallet or car keys on the dresser. Next, the exercise room—plenty of spouses had dropped dead on treadmills. He wasn’t there. She then checked all the

bathrooms, and the spare bedrooms. There was no sign of him. Every time she called his phone, she got no answer.

In the living room, Gene’s overcoat hung in the coat closet.

She checked the pockets. No phone. The coat smelled familiar, with a trace of his cologne, and she ached for him to hug her and say everything was okay.

Headlights cut across the room, and Lauren turned to see a car driving up the long driveway that divided the acre of front lawn. That would be Isabel, the nanny, coming to make breakfast for the kids and get them ready for school. Or, at least, it should be the nanny. Who else could it be at this early hour?

Lauren wondered if she should go to the master bedroom and get her pistol. She was somewhat afraid of guns, even though she owned one for protection.

Get a grip. With her palms sweating, she called Todd, the head of security at the high-rise building where Gene leased an office for his real estate firm.

“Todd, this is Lauren Stephens. I’ve been trying to call Gene, but I think his phone battery is dead. Have you seen him this morning?”

“No, ma’am, he hasn’t entered the building.”

“I’m worried about him. When I woke up he was gone, but his car is still in the garage and the alarm system has been on all night without interruption.”

There was a pause, then Todd said, “Would you like me to send one of my guys to your house?”

“Yes. Thank you.” Lauren ended the call.

She turned off the alarm, opened the front door to let Isabel inside, then closed and locked the door behind her. She explained the situation to Isabel, who then went to the kitchen and began preparing breakfast for the kids.

Lauren paced back and forth in the living room until another set of headlights approached the house. The new vehicle, a white SUV, had a bar of yellow lights on top, but they weren’t flashing.

She was grateful that at least the neighbors wouldn’t see anything out of the ordinary to gossip about.

To her surprise, Todd got out of the car. He looked like a college football player and was dressed in a security uniform of a light blue shirt, navy slacks and a windbreaker. Lauren unlocked the door and let him inside.

“I decided to come over myself,” Todd said.

“Thank you.”

“Where have you looked so far?”

“In the bedrooms, bathrooms, and the garage,” Lauren said.

“Does this house have an attic or basement?”

“An attic, no basement.”

Todd checked the attic and found nothing. In the garage, he looked inside the cars and opened their trunks. Then, retracing the steps Lauren had already taken, he searched the house, looking in closets and under the beds.

Finally, he went outside and walked the perimeter of the mansion, shining his flashlight in the dark.

Back inside, he told her, “I’m sorry, ma’am. I’ve looked everywhere except your kids’ rooms. You should check those, and if he’s not there, contact the police and ask for the Missing Persons Unit.”

Lauren felt a chill run down her spine. The reliable man who was the father of her children and her partner in life, a missing person?
She wondered who she might lean on for help. Her parents were both gone. She’d been an only child. Many of her friends had fallen away when she’d become financially successful. Most of the people she met these days wanted something from her. As she caught another faint whiff of that strangely disturbing smell, she felt alone, afraid, and vulnerable to … something.

Dead Lawyers Don't Lie (#1)

A mysterious killer who calls himself The Artist is assassinating wealthy lawyers in San Francisco. When war veteran Jake Wolfe accidentally takes his picture during a murder, The Artist adds Jake to his kill list and he becomes a target in a deadly game of cat and mouse that only one of them can survive. How far would you go to protect your loved ones from a killer? Jake wants to leave his top secret, violent past life behind him. But the reluctant, flawed hero can't ignore his duty and his personal moral compass.

This gripping thriller is full of suspense, plot twists and surprises. It features a cast of interesting characters, including several strong-willed women, two wise-cracking San Francisco Police Homicide Inspectors, one highly intelligent dog, and a philosophical killer who shares Jake's admiration for Van Gogh paintings but still plans to kill him anyway. As Jake gets closer to unraveling a merciless conspiracy, his life gets turned upside down and the danger level increases, adding to the growing suspense. This entertaining page-turner starts out as a murder mystery and then shifts gears into a high-speed action thriller that takes you on a roller-coaster ride to the riveting ending. A good read for those who enjoy mysteries, suspense, action and adventure, vigilante justice, unique characters, witty dialogue and a little romance too. Now on sale in over a dozen countries around the world. Be the first among your friends to read it.

Fans of new Kindle Unlimited novels will be happy to know this book is one of the best financial thrillers in kindle unlimited books.


San Francisco Superior Court Building
Criminal Courtroom Number 8

On the morning before attorney Richard Caxton was shot, he spent an hour in court doing what he did best—lying to the jury.

This time around, Caxton’s client was the son of a wealthy mortgage banker. Brice Riabraun had “allegedly” been driving under the influence of alcohol when he’d crashed his luxury SUV into the Tate family’s economy car. In court, Caxton claimed that the police had mishandled the case.

In Caxton’s successful cases, he often found a loophole in the law, or a small procedural error by the police, or a semibelievable alibi that would hold up just long enough to bamboozle a jury. He exploited these opportunities with the smooth-talking technique of a used car salesman. Other attorneys in the city marveled at—and envied—the creatively dishonest con man.

After arguing relentlessly for his version of the truth, Caxton listened to the court clerk read the jury’s verdict aloud and pronounce Riabraun not guilty.

Judge Emerson frowned. Caxton had to make an effort not to laugh.

Brian Tate bolted from his chair and railed at the jury. “How could you find him innocent when he was driving with a 0.15 blood alcohol level? Witnesses said he drank seven beers before he crashed into our car and almost killed my wife and kids!”

Tate’s wife, Judy, sat next to him with her arm in a plaster cast. The twelve jurors seated in the jury box averted their eyes and didn’t reply to him. Tate turned and stared at Caxton and his client with the righteous fury of someone who had been cheated out of justice.

Judge Emerson slammed his gavel down. “Order! Sit down, Mr. Tate.”

Caxton and his client just sat there gloating, and trying not to laugh at Tate, the working man in his department store suit and tie.

Tate curled his lip and ignored Judge Emerson’s warning and jabbed his finger at Caxton. “Anyone else would be going to prison now, but your client had the cash to hire the best lying lawyer that money can buy. Somebody ought to teach you two a lesson—the hard way.”

“Mr. Tate, that is enough!” Judge Emerson said as he banged his gavel again. “Do not test my patience, or you will find yourself held in contempt of court.”

Tate took a deep breath and let it out, struggling for control.

“Yes, Your Honor.” He sat down, but continued to glare at Caxton.

Caxton shrugged and maintained his cool and professional appearance. He had perfect teeth, a year-round tan, manicured fingernails, and the latest hairstyle. His suits, shirts, and ties were all custom-made by the finest tailors in the Financial District.

Caxton was used to having that level of helpless anger leveled at him by now. He couldn’t have cared less about it. He’d earned a reputation in San Francisco as the lawyer you loved to hate. But as he often said, being hated sure did pay well.

Caxton’s favorite story was about a client who had asked him if he could seek justice. He’d answered, “Yes, and how much justice can you afford to buy today?”

“You are now free to go, Mr. Riabraun,” Judge Emerson announced.

Riabraun grinned and shook hands with Caxton, then exited through a side door. He was already sliding into a waiting limousine when Emerson dismissed the jury.

Caxton headed toward the front entrance of the court building with his head held high. He went outside and faced the news reporters and gave a brief but well-rehearsed speech. “Today, justice was served. My client was found not guilty by a jury in a court of law. Thank goodness we live in a country where lawyers can protect honest, hardworking people such as my client from false accusations.”

Reporters began yelling questions at Caxton, but he walked away, looking pious. His publicist would issue a statement to the press any minute now. As he strolled toward the parking lot and his brand-new BMW, he didn’t notice someone sitting in a car watching him.

book #1 is only.99 for a limited time
About the author:
Mark Nolan is the author of Dead Lawyers Don't Lie, and the sequel, Vigilante Assassin. Right now he's busy writing Jake Wolfe Book 3. He also tries to make time every day to answer emails from readers. You can reach him and subscribe to his newsletter at marknolan.com. 

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Rita Wray said...

Sounds like a good book.

Dale Wilken said...

Sounds great.

wendy Hutton said...

the cover looks mysterious, the excerpt sounds great thanks

HaveBook WillSurvive said...

Sounds thrilling!

CJ said...

Looks like a good one. I like the cover too, nice shadowy design.

SB said...

I like the premise, the cover is mysterious

Laura said...

I enjoy this genre and happy to see that there are now 2 books in the series. Great covers to showcase these too.

Corey Hutton said...

Nice cover and it sounds interesting. Thanks.

Reader246 said...

From the blurb, I can tell that this will be an exciting read!

A.Isaahaque said...

Looks like a great read

Unknown said...

I think the book cover is awesome.

Mikhail R said...

A story about lawyer killer? Great!