Alex Cross rejoins the DC police force to confront two of the most diabolical killers he's ever encountered.
Part One | ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE
The first story, a thriller, involved an Iraqi soldier and a crime writer. This soldier was observing a twelve-story luxury apartment building, and he was thinking, So this is how the rich and famous live. Stupidly at best, and very dangerously for sure.
He began his checklist of possibilities for a break-in.
The service entrance at the back of the superluxury River-walk apartment building was rarely, if ever, used by the residents, or even by their sullen lackeys. More secluded than the main entry or the underground parking garage, it was also more vulnerable.
A single reinforced door showed off no external hardware. The frame was wired on all sides.
Any attempt at forced entry would trigger simultaneous alarms at the Riverwalk’s main office and with dispatch at a private security firm based just a few blocks away.
Static overhead cameras monitored all deliveries and other foot traffic during the day.
Use of the entrance was forbidden after seven p.m., when motion detectors were also engaged.
None of this was a serious problem, the soldier believed. Actually, it was an advantage for him.
Yousef Qasim had been a captain for twelve years with the Mukhabarat under Saddam. He had a sixth sense about such things, anything to do with the illusion of security. Qasim could see what the Americans could not — that their love of technology made them complacent and blind to danger. His best way into the Riverwalk was also the easiest.
Garbage was the answer. Qasim knew it was carried out every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday afternoon, without fail. American efficiency, so valued here, was another of the luxury building’s vulnerabilities.
Efficiency was predictability.
Predictability was weakness.
Copyright © 2007 by James Patterson
Peter Jay Fernandez is a New York-based actor and narrator. He has appeared on Broadway in Jelly's Last Jam and The Merchant of Venice. His extensive television credits include Funny Valentines, The Prosecutors, Law & Order, and Cosby. He currently lives in Harlem with his wife Denise and read London Bridges and Cross, also by James Patterson, for Hachette Audio.
Michael Stuhlbarg attended Juilliard and received a Tony Award nomination for his work in Pillowman and an Obie Award for his off-Broadway performance in The Voysey Inheritance.