The Devil's Punchbowl

The Devil's Punchbowl

A Novel

  • bestseller
With his gift for crafting “a keep-you engaged- to-the-very-last-page thriller” (USA Today) at full throttle, Greg Iles brings back the unforgettable Penn Cage in this electrifying suspense masterpiece.

A new day has dawned . . . but the darkest evils live forever in the murky depths of a Southern town.

Penn Cage was elected mayor of Natchez, Mississippi—the hometown he returned to after the death of his wife—on a tide of support for change. Two years into his term, casino gambling has proved a sure bet for bringing new jobs and fresh money to this fading jewel of the Old South. But deep inside the Magnolia Queen, a fantastical repurposed steamboat, a depraved hidden world draws high-stakes players with money to burn on their unquenchable taste for blood sport and the dark vices that go with it. When an old high school friend hands him blood-chilling evidence, Penn alone must beat the odds tracking a sophisticated killer who counters his every move, placing those nearest to him—including his young daughter, his renowned physician father, and a lover from the past—in grave danger, and all at the risk of jeopardizing forever the town he loves.
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  • Pocket Books | 
  • 592 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451668704 | 
  • December 2011
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Read an Excerpt

The Devil’s Punchbowl

CHAPTER
1

Midnight in the garden of the dead.

A silver-white moon hangs high over the mirror-black river and the tired levee, shedding cold light on the Louisiana delta stretching off toward Texas. I stand among the luminous stones on the Mississippi side, shivering like the only living man for miles. At my feet lies a stark slab of granite, and under that stone lies the body of my wife. The monument at its head reads:

 

SARAH ELIZABETH CAGE

1963–1998
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About the Author

Greg Iles
Ben Hillyer

Greg Iles

Greg Iles was born in 1960 in Germany, where his father ran the U.S. Embassy medical clinic during the height of the Cold War. After graduating from the University of Mississippi in 1983, he performed for several years with the rock band Frankly Scarlet and is currently a member of the band The Rock Bottom Remainders. His first novel, Spandau Phoenix, a thriller about Nazi war criminal Rudolf Hess, was published in 1993 and became a New York Times bestseller. Iles went on to write numerous bestselling novels, including Third Degree, True Evil, Turning Angel, Blood Memory, The Footprints of God, and 24 Hours (released by Sony Pictures as Trapped, with full screenwriting credit for Iles). He lives in Natchez, Mississippi.

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