Douglas Pike is no longer the murderous hustler he was in his youth, but reforming hasn't made him much kinder. He's just living out his life in his Appalachian hometown, working odd jobs with his partner, Rory, hemming in his demons the best he can. And his best seems just good enough until his estranged daughter overdoses, and he takes in his 12-year-old granddaughter, Wendy. Just as the two are beginning to forge a relationship, Derrick Kreiger, a dirty Cincinnati cop, starts to take an unhealthy interest in the girl. Pike and Rory head to Cincinnati to learn what they can about Derrick and the death of Pike’s daughter, and the three men circle, evenly matched predators in a human wilderness of junkie squats, roadhouse bars, and homeless Vietnam vet encampments.

Available: France | Germany | USA | Italy

French translation by Jacques Mailhos.

"This is a contemporary thriller that should satisfy any reader’s requirements for violence, tough characters, and sharp-edged dialogue." — Booklist

"Good God, what a beautiful book!" — Bernard Poirette, RTL

"A unique gem." — Cécile Rondeau Arnaud et William Boulay, Radio Fréquence Protestante

"Lyrical and sharp." — Marion Calais & William Galibert, Europe 1

"A first novel that overflows with talent." — Éric Libiot, L'Express

"A literary scalpel immersed in reality – in this case America at the end of the previous century, which has hardly evolved since, but gotten worse." — Alain Léauthier, Marianne

"Completely fascinating .... the return of the violent American thriller." — François Angelier, France Culture

"It's the brilliant Benjamin Whitmer's turn to reinvigorate this ancestral genre." — Nicolas Ungemuth, Le Figaro Magazine

"The language is sumptuous and rabid, a reminder that the most dazzling poetry and the most naked emotion can spring from an orgy of drugs, prostitution and extreme violence." — Bruno Juffin, Les Inrockuptibles

"Pike exudes a permanent tension." — Alexandre Fillon, Livres Hebdo

"Both dark and hilarious." — Richard Sourgnes, Le Républicain Lorrain

"The purest tradition of the noir novel." — Françoise Kunzé, L'Union

"The greatest novel — black as a winter's night punished by icy winds — of the literary season." — Thibaut Kaeser, L'Echo Magazine