Rachel Brady Final Approach Potential Book Cover

Dead Lift

Watson Award finalist—2011, nominated for mystery with the best sidekick.

Single mom Emily Locke is building a new life with her daughter online trading . Hoping to spend more time at home, she’s put her career on hold to work part-time for her private investigator friend, Richard Cole. It’s a nice balance between work and family until Emily finds out she’s been working for the attorney that defended her husband’s killer.

The discovery nearly destroys her friendship with Richard, but Emily resists abandoning his client, the socialite Claire Gaston, who awaits trial for the murder of a local plastic surgeon. The threat of losing her children to a self-serving ex-husband terrifies Claire more than the specter of a life behind bars. Sympathetic to a mother’s fears and unconvinced of Claire’s guilt, Emily resolves to stick with the case despite her growing concerns about Richard and the dubious attorney who hired him.

A mysterious note leads her into a daring undercover ruse at a high brow ladies health club. Impervious to fashion trends, disinterested in beauty treatments, Emily fakes conformity with Houston’s elite debutantes and trophy wives in a surreal fitness subculture where things, and people, are seldom what they seem. At this gym, “killer workout” has a whole new meaning.

Rachel Brady Final Approach Potential Book Cover

Final Approach

Best Houston Book—2010, by the Houston Press.

Sometimes clues just fall from the sky. Four years ago Emily Locke's life was shattered when her infant daughter and husband were lost in an inexplicable accident. She has nearly rebuilt her fragile mental health when Richard Cole, a disgraced former police detective now working as a PI, resurfaces. He wants help he says only investing in stocks she can provide—reconnaissance at a Texas skydiving establishment over a thousand miles away. Emily knows better than to work with him again, but can't refuse when she learns it's about a missing boy. She identifies too greatly with the new missing child case.

At Gulf Coast Skydiving, similarities between this new case and Emily's troubled past make it increasingly difficult for her to stay objective. Soon she's convinced that she is somehow connected to whoever took little Casey Lyons. Someone at the quiet, rural airstrip knows what happened to the boy . . . and to Emily's own daughter.

To find Casey before it's too late, Emily will have to make sense of the menacing parallels between his case and her daughter's.


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