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Survival of the Fittest
Cover of Survival of the Fittest
Survival of the Fittest
Alex Delaware Series, Book 12
Borrow Borrow
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
The daughter of a diplomat disappears on a school field trip—lured into the Santa Monica Mountains and killed in cold blood. Her father denies the possibility of a political motive. There are no signs of struggle and no evidence of sexual assault, leaving psychologist Alex Delaware and his friend LAPD homicide detective Milo Sturgis to pose the essential question: Why?
 
“Feverish in pace and rich in characters . . . a chilling and irresistible thriller.”—People
 
Working with Daniel Sharavi, a brilliant Israeli police inspector, Delaware and Sturgis soon find themselves ensnared in one of the darkest, most menacing cases of their careers. And when death strikes again, it is Alex who must go undercover, alone, to expose an unthinkable conspiracy of self-righteous brutality and total contempt for human life.
BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Jonathan Kellerman's Guilt.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
The daughter of a diplomat disappears on a school field trip—lured into the Santa Monica Mountains and killed in cold blood. Her father denies the possibility of a political motive. There are no signs of struggle and no evidence of sexual assault, leaving psychologist Alex Delaware and his friend LAPD homicide detective Milo Sturgis to pose the essential question: Why?
 
“Feverish in pace and rich in characters . . . a chilling and irresistible thriller.”—People
 
Working with Daniel Sharavi, a brilliant Israeli police inspector, Delaware and Sturgis soon find themselves ensnared in one of the darkest, most menacing cases of their careers. And when death strikes again, it is Alex who must go undercover, alone, to expose an unthinkable conspiracy of self-righteous brutality and total contempt for human life.
BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Jonathan Kellerman's Guilt.
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Awards-
Excerpts-
  • From the book Hooray for Hollywood.

    Brass stars with celebrities' names were inlaid in the sidewalk but the stars of the night were toxin merchants, strong-arm specialists, and fifteen-year-olds running from family values turned vicious.

    Open twenty-four hours a day, Go-Ji's welcomed them all.  The coffee shop sat on the north side of Hollywood Boulevard, east of Vine, between a tattoo parlor and a thrash-metal bar.

    At 3:00 a.m., a Mexican boy was sweeping the sidewalk when Nolan Dahl pulled his cruiser into the front loading zone.  The boy lacked documentation but the sight of the policeman didn't alter his rhythm; cops could care less about inmigraci¾n.  From what the boy had observed after a month, no one in L.A. cared much about anything.

    Nolan Dahl locked the black-and-white and entered the restaurant, sauntering the way only 220 pounds of young, muscular cop laden with baton, belt, radio, flashlight, and holstered nine-millimeter could saunter.  The place smelled rancid and the aisle of deep red carpet between the duct-taped orange booths was stained beyond redemption.  Dahl settled at the rear, allowing himself a view of the Filipino cashier.

    The next booth was occupied by a twenty-three-year-old pimp from Compton named Terrell Cochrane and one of his employees, a chubby sixteen-year-old mother of two named Germadine Batts, formerly of Checkpoint, Oklahoma.  Fifteen minutes ago, the two had sat around the corner in Terrell's white Lexus, where Germadine had rolled up a blue, spangled legging and shot fifteen dollars' worth of tar heroin into a faltering ankle vein.  Now nicely numbed and hypoglycemic, she was on her second diluted jumbo Coke, sucking ice and fooling with the pink plastic stirrer.

    Terrell had mixed heroin and cocaine into a speedball and was feeling as perfectly balanced as a tightrope walker.  He slouched, forked holes in his cheeseburger, simulated the Olympic logo with five flaccid onion rings while pretending not to watch the big blond cop.

    Nolan Dahl couldn't have cared less about either of them, or the five other things scattered around the bright room.  Elevator rock played softly.  A slim, pretty waitress the color of molasses hurried down the aisle and stopped at Nolan's booth, smiling.  Nolan smiled back, waved away a menu, and asked for coconut cream pie and coffee, please.

    "New on the night shift?" asked the waitress.  She'd come from Ethiopia five years ago and spoke beautiful English with a pleasant accent.

    Nolan smiled again and shook his head.  He'd been working Hollywood night shift for three months but had never patronized Go-Ji's, getting his sugar rush from a Dunkin' on Highland recommended by Wes Baker.  Cops and doughnuts.  Big joke.

    "Never seen you before, Officer—Dahl."

    "Well," he said, "life's full of new experiences."

    The waitress laughed.  "Well, hmm."  She left for the pastry counter and Nolan watched her before shifting his blue eyes, making contact with Terrell Cochrane.

    Scruffy thing.

    Nolan Dahl was twenty-seven and had been formed, to a large extent, by TV.  Before joining the force, his notion of pimps had been red velvet suits and big hats with feathers.  Soon he'd learned you couldn't prepare for anything.

    Anything.

    He scanned Terrell and the hooker, who had to be a minor.  This month the pimp was into coarse, oversized, insipid...
About the Author-
  • Jonathan Kellerman is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than three dozen bestselling crime novels, including the Alex Delaware series, The Butcher’s Theater, Billy Straight, The Conspiracy Club, Twisted, and True Detectives. With his wife, bestselling novelist Faye Kellerman, he co-authored Double Homicide and Capital Crimes. With his son, bestselling novelist Jesse Kellerman, he co-authored the first book of a new series, The Golem of Hollywood. He is also the author of two children’s books and numerous nonfiction works, including Savage Spawn: Reflections on Violent Children and With Strings Attached: The Art and Beauty of Vintage Guitars. He has won the Goldwyn, Edgar, and Anthony awards and has been nominated for a Shamus Award. Jonathan and Faye Kellerman live in California, New Mexico, and New York.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from November 3, 1997
    Why is it so hard to put down a Kellerman thriller, even though they're strewn with red herrings, the coincidences demand grand suspensions of disbelief and the main characters--psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware; his lover, Robin; his best friend, gay L.A. detective Milo Sturgis--are so predictable? It's simple: the nonstop action leaves you breathless; the plot twists keep you guessing; the themes (eugenics, this time) are provocative. Milo asks Alex to help solve the murder of Irit Carmeli, the deaf, slightly retarded teenaged daughter of an Israeli diplomat. They identify three similar cases in which retarded or handicapped victims are found with the enigmatic legend "DVLL" written near the body. Meanwhile, Alex counsels Helena Dahl, whose brother, a cop, may have been involved with Meta, an organization whose members have high IQs, just before he killed himself. When Alex and Milo discover a link between "DVLL" and neo-fascist Meta in the alleged suicide of a genius scientist, the "DVLL" and Dahl cases entwine. The coincidence is quite a stretch; but by the time it unfolds, readers are hooked enough to accept it, just as they're likely not to question Alex's going undercover for the police. As an added bonus, Israeli detective Daniel Sharavi, the astute protagonist of Kellerman's non-Delaware mystery (The Butcher's Theater, 1988), returns as a valuable partner in this typically complicated, exciting Kellerman page-turner.

  • Library Journal

    August 1, 1997
    Readers will find this latest installment in the Alex Delaware series (e.g., The Clinic, LJ 10/15/96) entertaining despite the author's tendency to overdescribe settings at the expense of character development. The psychologist again helps his friend, detective Milo Sturgis, solve a cold case: a deaf and mildly retarded Israeli girl, the daughter of a diplomat, is strangled in a park, and the letters "D-V-L-L" are found on a scrap of paper in her pocket. Authorities have failed to come up with a suspect or any leads, so the victim's father brings in a detective of his own, the great Daniel Sharavi, from Kellerman's The Butcher's Theater (Bantam, 1988). Over 200 pages later, Delaware finally goes undercover to infiltrate a sinister MENSA-like organization, and the ends of this plot, filled with psychopathic cops and pseudo-scientific racists, are (too neatly) tied up. Despite the book's flaws, Kellerman fans and readers seeking an intelligent thriller should enjoy this. Recommended for all public libraries.--Laurel A. Wilson, Alexandrian P.L, Mount Vernon, Ind.

  • Booklist

    September 1, 1997
    The hottest hand in the psychological thriller game has now produced a baker's dozen of best-sellers. Kellerman's latest once again stars psychologist Alex Delaware, who's as good at amateur sleuthing as he is at easing painful psyches. His cop buddy Milo Sturgis asks Alex to consult on a tragic case involving the brutal slaying of a young, deaf, mentally handicapped Israeli girl. The girl's father, a member of the Israeli embassy staff, is determined to find his daughter's killer and secretly employs Israeli detective Daniel Sharavi (previously introduced in Kellerman's "The Butcher's Theater," 1988) because he doesn't trust the cops to do the job. At first, Milo and Alex see Daniel as the enemy, but more murders, another suicide, and a baffling lack of clues force the three to work together. They contrive a dangerous plan using Alex as a decoy to lure the killer out of hiding. The stomach-churning climax proves once again that the ever-suave Delaware is both brave and near-indestructible. Kellerman has things down to a science now, knowing instinctively what his fans want: suspense, adventure, romance, and a leading man to die for. Buy plenty--this one will be hot. ((Reviewed Sept. 1, 1997))(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 1997, American Library Association.)

  • Chicago Tribune "An original and gripping tale that is one of his best."
  • Publishers Weekly "Why is it so hard to put down a Kellerman thriller...? It's simple: the nonstop action leaves you breathless; the plot twists keep you guessing; the themes...are provocative."
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Alex Delaware Series, Book 12
Jonathan Kellerman
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