The Dream of the Broken Horses
By William Bayer
Awarded the 2005 Prix Mystere de la Critique for best foreign crime novel…
New York Times bestselling author William Bayer, described by Robert B. Parker as “a first-rate master of heart-pounding suspense,” returns with this breathtaking, multilayered new tale of a twenty-five year old society murder and the many long shadows it still casts.
A man and a woman are making love….
One hot summer afternoon a quarter century ago, a wealthy socialite and her young lover, a private school teacher, were gunned down in a cheap hotel room on the outskirts of the Midwestern city of Calista. Now, forensic sketch artist David Weiss has returned to his hometown to cover a routine celebrity murder trial for ABC. For someone who has earned a reputation for cracking high-profile cases with his portraits of suspects based on eyewtiness accounts, chruning out courtroom sketches is merely pedestrian work. But Calista holds other attractions for David. First, there are the welcome attentions of CNN reporter Pam Wells. Then there’s the notoriously unsolved double murder at the Flamingo Court motel that has haunted him since boyhood.
Like his psychoanalyst father before him, David becomes obsessed with one of the Flamingo victims, Barbara Fulraine — who was as fascinating as she was enigmatic — and with the bizarre circle of friends, gangsters, columnists, and lovers who surrounded her. David’s father believed that if he could unlock Barbara’s troubling, recurring nightmare — which she called “the dream of the broken horses” — his solution would mark a watershed in his career. Now David, armed with old news clippings and police interviews, as well as an extraordinary psychological case study of Mrs. Fulraine recently discovered among his deceased father’s effects, seeks to use his highly honed professional skills to reassemble the face of her killer. But with each eyewitness interview and each fresh stroke of his pencil, David finds himself being hurled down a path of ever-darkening mystery, obsession and dread.
One of our most elegant and commanding writers of psycho-erotic suspense, William Bayer has crafted a riveting, sharp-edged psychological thriller, perhaps his finest, most compelling work to date.
Advance comment on The Dream Of The Broken Horses has been highly favorable:
“The investigation into a 25-year-old double murder of a wealthy socialite and her yoiung lover is renewed with vigor in this sharp and sexy thriller from Edgar-winning author William Bayer. Compelling psycho-erotic suspense….” Publisher’s Weekly
“Edgar winner Bayer writes a psycho-erotic thriller, that, in a detective’s yearning for a glamorous beauty murdered when he was only a boy, conjures up the classic film Laura. Bayer, whose previous novels starred NYPD detective Frank Janek, makes a startling yet satisfying departure. Richly atmospheric….” Booklist (starred, boxed review)
“Bayer returns from his pseudonymous sabbatical as David Hunt (The Magician’s Tale, etc.) to spin a dizzyingly complex tale of a long-unsolved felony. Bayer (Mirror Maze etc.) turns the case into something ambitious, penetrating….” Kirkus Reviews
“The Dream Of The Broken Horses is a hypnotic blend of suspense, mystery and revelation. Erotically charged and poetically rendered, it worked its way straight into my own dreams. It’s great to read a smart, sexy thriller and this is one I recommend.”
— T. Jefferson Parker (author of Silent Joe and Laguna Heat)