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Early in this fevered stand-alone suspense novel from bestseller Gross (15 Seconds), Wendy Gould, a married woman with two stepchildren and literary ambitions, meets Curtis Kitchner, a handsome freelance journalist, in a Manhattan hotel bar. Against her better instincts, Wendy accompanies Curtis up to his room, where an intruder shoots Curtis dead. Wendy manages to kill the intruder in self-defense, but she goes on the run after a badge on the man's body identifies him as a Homeland Security agent. Wendy's fate becomes entwined with that of Lauritzia Velez, a pretty 24-year-old Mexican woman being hunted by vicious killers employed by drug cartel honcho Eduardo Cano as part of a vendetta against Lauritzia's father. Wendy's frantic attempts to avoid being captured or killed before she can discover a way to exonerate herself are somehow tied to the efforts to murder Lauritzia. Narrow escapes, tense situations, and false clues abound as Gross spins the action to an exciting, if improbable, ending. Agent: Simon Lipskar, Writers House. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.