“My mother told me that if there was ever a time in my life when I needed protection, and no one was around for me, I should go to you. Find Mr. Stride, she told me. She said you’d help me.”

Jonathan Stride returns home to his cottage on Lake Superior after midnight and finds a teenage girl hiding in his bedroom. She’s pretty, scared, and soaked to the bone…and she says that someone is trying to kill her. The girl isn’t a stranger to Stride. She’s the daughter of a woman he tried — and failed — to protect from an abusive, murderous ex-husband years earlier.

With the guilt of that failure hanging over his head, Stride is determined to protect this young girl, Cat Mateo, from a shadowy predator. However, Cat seems to have secrets of her own. Stride’s partner Maggie is convinced that the girl can’t be trusted, and she’s afraid that Stride may be putting himself in danger by letting Cat inside his house.

Wherever Cat goes, death seems to follow, and Stride feels as if he is always one step behind a brutal killer who has Cat in his sights. He also finds himself on a collision course with another detective — a woman who shared his bed for years: Serena Dial. With all of their fragile relationships hanging in the balance, Stride, Serena, and Maggie must find out why this young girl has been targeted for death — and why a decade-old crime is coming back to life.

Finalist for the Minnesota Book Award

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