Haunted by the darkness that still lived inside him, James Lee Burke's charismatic Detective Dave Robicheaux of New Iberia, Louisiana, confronts his most challenging case yet in the highly recommended Pegasus Descending. Trish Klein, a shrewd young woman whose last name is entirely too familiar to Robicheaux, has already attracted the attention of federal authorities by passing counterfeit $100 bills. However, Robicheaux soon realizes that Klein's presence in his town probably means that even bigger trouble will soon be on its way.

Beautiful 18-year-old Yvonne Darbonne has apparently committed suicide, and nobody who knew her has a clue as to why. Then, in a separate cold-case investigation into an obvious hit-and-run homicide, Robicheaux follows an obscure clue that will lead him to question Darbonne's boyfriend, Tony Lujan, the son of a prominent but notorious Louisiana businessman. When young Lujan is then brutally murdered, Robicheaux discovers clues that link the death to someone associated with Trish Klein's father.

These incidents lead Robicheaux into a world of moral insanity populated by innocent victims, marginalized people with blood-spattered souls and habitual offenders in league with the forces of darkness. A recovering alcoholic homicide detective with a long history of violence, Robicheaux quickly realizes that he may have never had a more perplexing case. Yet he will ultimately discover that he has never had a case with a more ironic solution. This powerful, paradoxical story of redemption and vengeance is the exemplary work of a writer who is clearly at the top of his game. Enriched by the presence of the resourceful yet flawed Robicheaux probably the most fascinating protagonist in contemporary crime fiction as well as complex characterizations, luminous prose and profound observations of human nature, Burke's new novel may be his very best.

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