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Run For Your Life

Move over Alex Cross–Manhattan is Detective Michael Bennett's territory and only he can stop the Teacher's lethal lessons.

A spree killer passes brutal judgment.
A calculating murderer who calls himself the Teacher is taking on New York City, slaughtering the powerful and the arrogant. Everyone is his potential student–from the loudmouthed girl on her cell phone to the city's snooty upper crust. His message to them is clear: remember your manners or suffer the consequences! For some, it seems that the rich are finally getting what they deserve. For New York's elite, it is a call to terror.

No chance for redemption.
There is only one man in the NYPD who can tackle such a high-profile case: Detective Michael Bennett. For anyone else, the pressure would be overwhelming, but Mike is ready to step up–taking care of his ten children has prepared him for the job! As the media frenzy escalates, all of Mike's children fall victim to a virulent flu bug–almost as challenging an assignment for Bennett as tracking down the killer!

One man struggles to save a city.
A secret pattern emerges in the Teacher's lessons, leaving Detective Bennett just a few precious hours to save New York from the greatest disaster in its history. Run for Your Life is the most speed-charged, adrenaline-packed novel ever from "the man who can't miss" (Time magazine).

Chapter 3

I MOANED along with the kids as the door closed behind Mary Catherine.

It’s not that I don’t love my children. I really do. But I’m the guardian of the kind of brood that would send Mother Teresa doctor-shopping for pharmaceutical assistance.

How’s this for the Bennett lineup? Juliana, thirteen; Brian, twelve; Jane, eleven; Ricky, ten; Eddie, nine; twins Fiona and Bridget, eight; Trent, six; Shawna, five; and Chrissy, four. A total of ten, count them: two Hispanic, two black, one Asian, and the rest white. All of them are adopted. Pretty impressive, I know. Not many families can field a multicultural baseball team, plus a bench player.

It was primarily Maeve’s idea. We started taking in her “stray angels,” as she called our gang way back before Brangelina got into the act. How could either of us have foreseen the nightmare of her death from cancer at the age of thirty-eight?

I wasn’t completely alone, thank God. Mary Catherine had appeared like a gift from heaven while Maeve was dying, and for some unfathomably merciful reason, she still hadn’t fled screaming. My crotchety grandfather-turned-priest, Seamus, was pastor of Holy Name Church, just around the corner. He’d wangled the job so he could help with the kids and disapprove of me, but the disapproval was a small price to pay for his help.

But it had been nearly impossible to take care of my young ones even when their mother was still alive and they were perfectly healthy. What was I going to do with the apartment transformed into a children’s ward at a hospital?

A thousand worries sprang up in my already stress-racked head. How was I going to get the well kids to school? What about taking the sick ones to a doctor’s office? How much sick leave did I have left? Had I paid this month’s health insurance premium on time? And what about the missed schoolwork? An image of the kids’ strong-willed, meticulous principal, Sister Sheilah, loomed in my mind like a specter.

I palmed my forehead and took a deep breath. I was a trained problem solver, I reminded myself. I could get us through this. It was temporary—a rough spot for sure, but a brief one. Like in any survival situation, the worst thing I could do was panic.

I bent down over Chrissy, my youngest, as she began to wail at the tippity-top of her lungs. Through her thin Backyardigans pj top, I could feel her burning up with fever. So were her copatients, Ricky and Bridget. They all started whining for ginger ale.

Me, too, I thought, searching around frantically for Mary Catherine’s spare bandanna. And let’s not spare the Jack Daniel’s.

Read by Bobby Cannavale–He made his Broadway debut in Mauritius and was nominated for a Tony Award for his perfonrmance. On television, Bobby won an Emmy for his performance in Will & Grace. Bobby's film credits include The Station Agent, Fast Food Nation, Snakes on a Plane, Shall We Dance, Romance and Cigarettes, The Bone Collector, and Washington Heights. Bobby will next be seen in the feature comedy, Mall Cop and next year will star in his own series for ABC, in which he plays the title character Cupid.

Dallas Roberts–He stars in the upcoming films The Factory and Shrink. His films include 3:10 to Yuma, Walk the Line, Joshua, Flicka, The Notorious Bettie Page, and A Home at the End of the World. Television appearances include The L Word, Law & Order: SVU, and Law & Order. Dallas is a graduate of the Juillard School and recently starred off-Broadway in the hit production of Edward Albee's Peter and Jerry.

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