Cemetery Lake: A Thriller (Christchurch Noir Crime Series)
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A chilling case of unsolved murders and mistaken identities unravels when a lake in a Christchurch cemetery releases its grip on the murky past in this exciting crime thriller from the internationally bestselling author of The Laughterhouse.
Cemetery Lake begins in a cold and rainy graveyard, where Private Detective Theodore Tate is overseeing an exhumation—a routine job for the weathered former cop. But when doubts are raised about the identity of the body found in the coffin, the case takes a sinister turn. Tate knows he should walk away and let his former colleagues on the police force deal with it, but his strong sense of justice intervenes.
Complicating matters are a few loose ends from Tate’s past. Even good guys have secrets, and Tate thought his were dead and buried for good. With time running out and a violent killer lurking, will he manage to stay one step ahead of the police, or will his truth be unearthed?
Originally published in Paul Cleave’s native New Zealand in 2008, Cemetery Lake is the first novel to feature Theodore Tate, the “quintessential flawed hero” (Kirkus Reviews) from Collecting Cooper and The Laughterhouse. Full of the clever plot twists and sardonic humor for which Cleave has become known, it is at once a totally entertaining crime novel and an unforgettable drama about the universal battle against the darkness within.
recreation. Some of the gravesites are close to it, and I wonder if the coffins are affected by moisture. I hope we’re not about to dig up a box full of water. The driver pauses to wipe his hand across his forehead, as if operating all of those levers is hot work in these cold conditions. His glove leaves a greasy mark on his skin. He looks out at the oak trees and areas of lush lawn, the still lake, and he’s probably planning on being buried out here one day. Everybody thinks that when they see
to wait here for a few seconds.” “No, no, don’t leave.” “I’ll be ten seconds.” “Please.” It hurts to ignore her cry, but I do it. I open the door to David’s car and pop open the glove box. I find a pocketknife in there that makes fast work of the duct tape. She sits up and folds her arms in front of her. “Okay, Stacey, here’s what I want you to do. We’re going to get you to your feet and into the car,” I say, taking off my jacket. “It’s dry and warm in there,” I say as I wrap the jacket
forty when he comes out. I doubt that would sound like justice to any of the girls. Or to Patricia Tyler. Can this sick kid be redeemed in ten years? Is redemption even possible? “We’re going to the police,” I say. “Fuck that.” “It’s the only option.” He goes quiet as he thinks about it. “Okay, but you’re going to have to help me out of here. My arm’s broken.” “Don’t try anything.” “I won’t.” I close my eyes. I think of Emily. I think of all the dead girls. I think of a promise I made. I
died, his blue fingernails the first indication that he was poisoned. Henry’s daughter hasn’t spoken to me because I’m no longer in the same position I was two years ago. It’s easy to let my mind wander and think of things that might have been. I could have done more back then. I could have solved a murder, if that’s what happened. Could have stopped another man from dying. The jury is still out on whether Mrs. Martins had bad luck or bad judgment when it came to men. The rain gets heavier,
doors, but it doesn’t fit. It’s not even close to fitting. There are still plenty of ways to get inside, and I opt for the less subtle approach of kicking in the back door. It opens easily enough, bouncing back off the wall and almost closing again, stopped only by the busted-up jamb. The cops will know who did it. But if I’m right about things, it won’t matter. They’ll be glad I did it. The first thing I can smell is alcohol. I move up the hallway. The carpet is worn and the floorboards