NYPD Red is a special task force charged with protecting the interests of Manhattan's wealthiest and most powerful citizens. When a world-famous movie producer is poisoned on the first day of a Manhattan film festival called Hollywood on the Hudson, they are the first ones called. Then an actor is killed on the set of a film. And a Molotov cocktail explodes at a movie premiere.
Detective First Grade Zach Jordan and his new partner—and ex-girlfriend—Detective Kylie MacDonald are assigned to the case. The killer has every murder, every escape, planned down to the last detail—and he's scripted an explosive finale that will bring New York and Hollywood to its knees. With larger-than-life action, relentless speed, and white-knuckle twists, NYPD RED is a mega-blockbuster from "The Man Who Can't Miss." (TIME)
BOOK ONE | THERE’S NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE
HENRY MUHLENBERG CLAMPED his hand down hard over Edie Coburn’s mouth. She sank her teeth into the soft flesh of his palm and threw her head back, but he didn’t let go. The last thing he needed was for some idiot to walk past her trailer and hear her screaming.
Her body convulsed. Once. Twice. Again. Again. She shuddered and went limp in his arms.
He eased his hand off her mouth.
“Get me a cigarette,” she said. “They’re on the counter.”
Muhlenberg slid off the sofa and padded naked to the other side of the trailer. He was twenty-eight, a German wunderkind who made edgy films that critics loved and nobody went to see. Fed up with driving a ten-year-old Opel and living in a one-bedroom flat in Frankfurt, he sold his soul for a Porsche 911, a house in the Hills, and a three-picture film deal.
The first picture had tanked, the second made six mil—a home run for an indie, but in big-studio-speak a colossal failure. If this one didn’t blow the roof off the multiplexes, he’d be back in Deutschland shooting music videos for garage bands.
It was his final at bat, and now that bitch Edie Coburn was screwing it up. He had come to her trailer to negotiate a truce between her and her asshole husband, Ian Stewart, who unfortunately was also her costar. Negotiate? More like grovel.
“Edie, please,” he had said. “We’ve got a full crew and a hundred extras standing around with the meter running. It’s costing the studio a thousand dollars for every minute you refuse to come out and shoot this scene.”
“Ian should have thought of that before he started banging that brainless bundle of silicone and peroxide.”
“You don’t know that for a fact,” he said. “The rumor about Ian and Devon is just that—a rumor. Probably started by some flack at the studio to get advance buzz about the movie.”
“I don’t know about Germany, Herr Muhlenberg, but here in New York, all rumors are true.”
“Look, I’m not a marriage counselor,” he said. “I know you and Ian have problems, but I also know you’re a professional. What’ll it take to get you into wardrobe and onto the set?”
She was wearing a short royal blue kimono with a busy floral and peacock design. She tugged on the sash and the kimono fell to the floor.
Revenge fuck. Muhlenberg complied.
At a thousand bucks a minute, the sex cost the studio fifty-four thousand dollars. Edie wasn’t nearly as good as the underage star of his last film, but if you had to bang a forty-six-year-old diva to save your career, you could do a lot worse than Edie Coburn.
He lit the cigarette for her. She sucked in hard and blew it in his face. “I hope you’re not waiting for a standing ovation,” she said. “This was strictly business.”
“Right,” he said. “Then I can tell Ian we can expect you on the stage in thirty minutes.”
“Yeah. You might want to put some pants on first.”
Copyright © 2012 by James Patterson
Edoardo Ballerini is an actor and an award-winning audiobook narrator. On screen, he's best known for his working the television series The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire, and 24. Edoardo was nominated for a 2012 Audie Award for his recording of The Land of Laughs. AudioFile Magazine named him one of the "Best Voices of 2011."
Jay Snyder has performed on Broadway and Off-Broadway, regional theatre, television, film, and works regularly in the voice-over industry.