When two young women are murdered on the streets of Manhattan - exactly one year apart, both after dates arranged through an online dating website - Detective Ellie Hatcher is moved to a special assignment on the elite homicide task force. The killer has left behind a taunting hint connecting the two cases, and Flann McIlroy, an eccentric and publicity-seeking homicide detective, is convinced that Ellie is uniquely situated to help him pursue a terrifying theory: someone is using the lure of the internet and the promise of love to launch a killing spree against the women of New York City.
Ellie's involvement in the investigation is personal. She fits the profile of the victims and knows what the pursuit of a sociopath can do to a cop - her own father spent his life trying to identify a notorious serial killer. When the killer begins to parallel the conduct of the murderer who consumed her father, Ellie knows it has also become personal for him, too. In a dangerous game where she is both hunter and prey, Ellie's only choice is to find the killer before he claims his next victim - who Ellie knows could very well be herself.
A former deputy district attorney in Portland, Alafair Burke now teaches criminal law at Hofstra School of Law and lives in New York City. She is the daughter of acclaimed crime writer James Lee Burke.