When Jake "Payday" Bechet hears that two men have been murdered a few miles from where he lives in the Hamptons---hanged from the Shinnecock Bridge, their hands severed---he knows that trouble is coming. Trouble for him, for everyone, because it means that someone has betrayed the Castello crime family. Whether it’s someone trying to move in on their drug operation or the cops making their own statement, he doesn’t know, but he wants to stay far away from it all.
After all, years ago Bechet himself walked away from the Castellos with enough inside information to hold over their heads and to keep himself safe, then went underground. He doesn’t want to get anywhere near them now but soon discovers that he can’t remain indifferent---first it seems one of his friends has gotten involved in the fringes of this battle, and then the larger picture becomes clear: Jorge Castello himself wants Bechet to find out who’s behind the killings, claiming there’s a traitor in the family. The last thing Bechet wants to do is work for the Castellos again, but he knows he has to find a way to finish it somehow.
Between Bechet and Tommy Miller, a retired P.I. whose ex-girlfriend has also gotten too close to the Castellos and whose father was one of their casualties a few years back, all the loose ends will be tied up---one way or another---before the end of twenty-four hours.
Once again Daniel Judson shines an unforgiving light on the darkest parts of the Hamptons and delivers a powerful, unforgettable read paced at breakneck speed.
He couldn’t shake the feeling that he had forgotten something, and not long after walking through his door he narrowed it down to whether or not he had turned off the quartz heater he used to keep warm as he worked. It would have been easy, as beat as he was after a long day of gutting the restaurant’s bathrooms to get at a plumbing problem, for such a thing to have slipped his mind. Grueling work, tearing out perfectly good dry wall to get at pipe, more so because he had to do it alone, couldn’t afford to hire help. Plus he knew very little about plumbing,
Praise for The Darkest Place
“Well-drawn moral and amoral characters, and permeated with violence... Offers a strong sense of place along with thoughtful rumination about doing the right thing and finding redemption.”
“A searing, brooding look at the bleak side of the Hamptons. Judson keeps the reader off-kilter as he builds on his cast of morally compromised characters. An intense novel, fortified by authentic dialogue and a precise setting.”
“I could not have been more impressed. Judson has written a novel of depth and dimension about characters with blood in their veins and fire in their hearts.”
---Robert Crais, author of The Watchman
“Grim and harrowing.”
---Daily News (New York)
“Action packed. Loss and redemption rule in Shamus Award-winning Daniel Judson's third novel, set in Southampton nights so cold that they could cool off a reader sizzling in this summer's heat. It's noir on ice.”