Books & Beyond

#Book #Excerpt from Lethal Journey by Kim Cresswell @kimcresswell

Posted on: January 25, 2014

An hour and half later, Lauren’s father escorted her through the towering front doors of the Four Seasons Restaurant.

At the top of the stairs, she glanced around the room filled with the upscale crowd. Actors, wannabees and the wealthy. Some familiar and some not. Of all the restaurants in New York, this had always been her favorite. She loved the extravagant décor—walls covered with a fortune of fine art and decorated with hard-to-find collectibles. As she walked past the white marble pool the soothing sound of water engulfed the main dining room.

“Good evening,” the waiter said. “Would you like to hear this evening’s specials?” He quickly filled the crystal water glasses.

“No thanks. I think we’re ready to order.”

“Dad, I’ll have my usual.”

“Okay. Let’s start with a bottle of Corton Pougets 1995.”

“Excellent choice, sir.”

“For our appetizer, we’ll have the Scottish salmon roll and some Osetra caviar. Miss Taylor will have the Dover sole with lemon sauce. I’ll have the filet mignon, rare, with grilled portabellas.”

The waiter nodded. “Very well.”

When the wine arrived, her father raised his glass in salute. “I propose a toast.”

She raised her wine glass to meet his.

“Happy birthday to my beautiful daughter. You have brought me so much joy these past thirty-one years. Cheers.”

“Cheers.” While she sipped her wine, he pulled a burgundy box from his inside breast pocket and slid it across the table.

“What’s this?” The look on his face reminded her of how his eyes would beam bright with joy at her and Jamie when they opened their Christmas gifts. Intrigued, she popped open the box. Diamonds shimmered in the candlelight.

“Dad, it’s gorgeous.”

“A little something I found on Fifth Avenue. Do you like it?”

Lauren smiled and clasped the white gold bracelet around her wrist. “Of course I do. Thank you. It’s beautiful.” She started to nibble on a bread twist and noticed her father yawn. “Tough day?”

“Yeah. I spent most of the afternoon reading through my old files on Valdina.”

“You should be the one taking him on again. You’re still the Deputy District Attorney.”

She never forgot the look of disappointment in her father’s eyes when the decision came down ten years ago. Not guilty of murder. With lots of money tucked away and dozens of associates bought and paid for, Gino Valdina’s “friends” would gladly take the fall for him. Anytime. At any cost. And had.

“You know that’s not possible. The farther I stay away from the case the better. We don’t want to give Ricardo Pinstronna any excuse to ask the judge for a mistrial. The guy is the true meaning of a slime-ball. He gives lawyers a bad name. Did you know he defended a dozen of Bonanno’s crew in the eighties and won?”

“I didn’t know that. Well he’s not going to get his client off this time. Valdina’s claim that someone broke into his house while he was out of town and slaughtered his wife for revenge doesn’t wash. I’m sure he has enemies, lots of them. Being head of New York’s oldest and most influential Cosa Nostra for over thirty years, no doubt there are people lined up waiting to take him out and anyone he’s connected with. The evidence doesn’t lie.” Lauren paused and took a sip of her wine before continuing. “Gino killed Madelina in cold blood. She was fed up with his ‘goomatta’ and demanded fidelity in their marriage. When he refused to give up his long-term mistress, Madelina took matters in her own hands and filed for a divorce. Not something you do when you’re married to the mob. When you’re a Mafia wife you’re “owned” for life. I’m confident the state will prove their case.”

“And I’m confident my brilliant and beautiful daughter will nail the bastard’s ass to the wall.”

She hoped he was right. “We’ll get him.”

Her father leaned back in the chair. “Troy said he wouldn’t be surprised if Pinstronna wants to make an eleventh hour deal.”

Troy Granger. Assistant District Attorney. An attractive playboy known throughout the state of New York. Even his name made Lauren’s skin crawl. She detested the man and the feeling was mutual. To fuel the fire even more, her best friend Amanda Richmond had become Troy’s recent love conquest. The thought of Amanda and Troy vacationing in the Bahamas almost made Lauren sick.

Lauren put the linen napkin on her lap. “I couldn’t care less what Troy thinks. He’s not running this trial. There won’t be any deals. It’s all or nothing.”

“That’s my girl. You sound very much like your old man. Hey, look. Here comes our dinner.”

“Great, I’m starved.”

After the waiter put the salmon roll and caviar on the table, they dug in.

When their entrees were served, Lauren pushed the green beans to the side of her plate and took a bite of the sole. Across the room a waitress snapped a picture of a young couple cuddled together in a booth. The man looked deep into the woman’s eyes, and then seductively kissed the woman’s cheek.

“Dating anyone these days?”

The fork slipped from between Lauren’s fingers and fell to her plate with a clang, but went unnoticed due to the festive hum of the restaurant. “What?”

“Dating anyone?”

She swallowed hard. “You know I haven’t dated much since—”


“Yes, since Eric. Do we have to discuss this tonight?”

“I’m just concerned. You don’t seem to have much of a social life.”

“Come on, you make me sound like a nun. I don’t have much free time these days. I volunteer every Saturday at the Humane Society. The Women’s Law Association meets every other Tuesday and my days are pretty full with this case.”

“What about your evenings?”

“I’ve dated at least a dozen men and you know it.” She gave him a tight smile and snapped her bread twist. “Let’s drop it, Dad.”

Lauren glanced across the table at the Picasso hanging on the wall. Eric had always hated that painting, said it looked like mashed up peas and carrots, and insisted on sitting with his back to it.

She never thought he’d turn his back on her as well. A flash of anger surged through her. Lauren grabbed another bread twist.

The knot in her stomach added to her frustration…a reminder of how lonely she really was.

Lethal Journey333x500

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Thriller

Rating – PG-18

More details about the author

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1 Response to "#Book #Excerpt from Lethal Journey by Kim Cresswell @kimcresswell"

Thanks for hosting. 🙂


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