Details at Ten

Details at Ten

With this heart-stopping new thriller, Ardella Garland -- pen name of bestselling novelist Yolanda Joe -- introduces one of the sassiest, smartest, and most compelling characters ever to crack a mystery: television news reporter Georgia Barnett.
In a tale as immediate as this evening's news, Details at Ten follows the charismatic Georgia as she struggles with justice, truth, and the ratings while pursuing a terrifying story of a child missing in the midst of gang warfare in Chicago. Little Butter, as the girl is called, has disappeared after witnessing a drive-by shooting on the South Side and identifying the criminals' car on live TV during an interview with Georgia. Haunted by the recognition of her responsibility for the child's fate and heartbroken at seeing her old South Side neighborhood devastated by violence, our whip-smart reporter throws herself into the search for Butter -- dragging news producers, directors, cameramen, and support staff behind her kicking and screaming. For as the take-no-prisoners Georgia quickly discovers, the last thing her ratings-driven TV news czars want to cover is another tragedy in a poor black neighborhood.
Georgia uses her power as a television personality in smart, hilarious, and heartfelt ways as this shocking story unfolds with the pace of a runaway train. Our daredevil reporter's pursuit of the truth takes her into dangerous territory, but she's not there alone. This is one woman who won't take no for an answer, but everywhere she turns, there in her way stands a masterpiece of a man, Detective Doug Eckart. He's a tough cop and he's not about to let a TV reporter nose in on the case, but Georgia's drive is relentless and she keeps scooping him at the most sensitive moments. These made-for-each-other enemies agree to a sexually tense truce while gang violence escalates, informers turn up dead, and time to find the little girl seems to be running out. As a simple missing-persons case mushrooms into a citywide effort to nab one of the most powerful gang leaders in Chicago, Georgia, Doug, and the crew of Channel Eight News find themselves struggling to do what's right in a world of violence, racism, and fear. In Details at Ten, Ardella Garland takes her readers into a world of both terror and hope with a powerful tale of innocence, justice, and, finally, love.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 208 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743211253 | 
  • September 2000
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

My day seemed to be winding down innocently enough --

"Georgia, may I see you for a minute?"

-- but it didn't play out that way.

I stepped into my boss's office. Garbage was everywhere. Crushed tin cans. Stacks of old newspapers. A broken stress toy on the floor. Stress test flunked, okay.

I thought of Junk Man, the urban prospector who used to cruise my old neighborhood with a grocery cart. Junk Man loved to sift through garbage. This office would be his treasure island.

"Clear a space somewhere," said my boss, Halo Bingington. "Please have a seat."

Bing's personality is half... see more

About the Author

Ardella Garland

About Ardella Garland
Nom De Plume of bestselling novelist Yolanda Joe

Yolanda Joe is a Chicago native, raised on the south side by her maternal grandparents. Her working class family was influential in pushing her to achieve her goals of being a journalist and a novelist.

Ms. Joe received a four-year academic scholarship to Yale University, from which she graduated in 1984 with a BA in English Literature. During her stint at Yale she studied under well-known scholar Henry Louis Gates and received a fellowship to study British Literature at Oxford in England. She went on to receive an MS in Broadcasting from the Columbia School of Journalism.

Yolanda Joe began her professional journalism career at Chicago's WBBM-AM, an all news radio station, where she was a production assistant, a producer, and part time writer. She transferred from radio to television and worked as a writer and producer for Channel 2, the CBS-owned station. She is currently a freelance journalist, spending more time on her novels.

Her first book, Falling Leaves of Ivy (Longmeadow Press, 1992), was about four college friends who share a secret that could ruin their lives. Set in the fast-paced-have-it-all-80s, it is about interracial relationships, racism in the workplace, betrayal, and murder. The book made the Blackboard best seller list in 1993.

Ms. Joe's second novel, He Say, She Say (Doubleday, 1997), is a vibrant and rollicking novel that shows how black men and women relate to one another through friendship, family, and romance. The novel made the Blackboard and Chicago Tribune best seller lists. Her third novel, Bebe's By Golly Wow (Doubleday, 1998), was a Literary Guild Book of the Month selection as well as a Blackboard best seller. Her fourth novel, This Just In (Doubleday, 2000) is about five friends in the television news business and focuses on racism and sexism in that cut-throat industry.

Details At Ten (Simon & Schuster, September 19, 2000) was the debut novel in Yolanda Joe's mystery series and introduces Georgia Barnett, a sassy and daring television investigative reporter whose passion for news, desire for justice, and love for Chicago are the driving forces behind the series.

Now Georgia Barnett is back on the case in Ardella Garland's second fast-paste, suspense-packed, and thought-provoking mystery, Hit Time (Simon & Schuster, February 13, 2002). Once again, Garland takes readers inside the competitive world of television news and confronts real-life, racially charged issues of injustice, corruption, and violence.

Yolanda Joe writes and resides in her hometown of Chicago.




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