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The Second Girl

Hardcover, 6/7/16

ISBN 9780316264174

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He’s a good detective…with a bad habit.
One of the New York Times‘s, Booklist’s, and Strand Magazine‘s Best Novels of the Year! Nominated for the Barry Award for Best Novel.

Frank Marr knows crime in Washington, DC. A decorated former police detective, he retired early and now ekes out a living as a private eye for a defense attorney. Frank Marr may be the best investigator the city has ever known, but the city doesn’t know his dirty secret.

A longtime drug addict, Frank has lent his considerable skills to hiding his habit from others. But after he accidentally discovers a kidnapped teenage girl in the home of a local drug gang, Frank becomes a hero and is thrust into the spotlight. He reluctantly agrees to investigate the disappearance of another girl—possibly connected to the first—and the heightened scrutiny may bring his own habits to light, too.

Frank is as slippery and charming an antihero as you’ve ever met, but he’s also achingly vulnerable. The result is a mystery of startling intensity, a tightly coiled thriller where every scene may turn disastrous. The Second Girl is the crime novel of the season and the start of a thunderous new series from an author who knows the criminal underworld inside and out.

David Swinson is a retired police detective, having served for sixteen years with the Washington Metropolitan Police Department. Before joining the DC police, Swinson was a record store owner in Seal Beach, California, a punk rock/alternative concert promoter in Long Beach, California, and a music video producer and independent filmmaker in Los Angeles. Swinson currently lives in northern Virginia with his wife, daughter, bull mastiff, and bearded dragon.

The Second Girl is a terrific DC crime novel.” —@shoedog11 (George Pelecanos)

“David Swinson pulls off a masterly piece of characterization . . . The writing throws sparks, and the ferocious plot strips back layer after layer of Frank’s character as we—and he—find out how much of his humanity is still left.” —Tana French, author of The Secret Place

“Marr is one of the most compelling and complex protagonists to come along in years. . . . Reminiscent of The Wire and the writing of George Pelecanos and Dennis Lehane, The Second Girl is a winner.” —Jeffery Deaver, author of The Kill Room

“It’s actually refreshing to pick up The Second Girl.” —The New York Times Book Review

“This is the DC crime novel you should be reading this summer . . . The delight of The Second Girl is how smoothly its engine runs . . . [Marr’s] character just works. He’s damaged enough to prove interesting, and self-aware enough not to drive a reader batty.” —Washingtonian