Boston medical examiner Maura Isles is attending a medical
conference in Wyoming when she runs into a barely
remembered but charming college classmate. Feeling trapped
in her current relationship and tired of always being
cautious and responsible, she impulsively agrees to go on a
ski trip with Doug, his 13-year-old daughter and two
friends. A day of fun turns ugly, however, when the group
gets lost in a snowstorm and their car ends up in a ditch.
They make their way to the nearby village of Kingdom Come,
rumored to be the home of a local cult, where they find the
houses deserted, although food is still on tables and cars
are in garages. As if that wasn't eerie enough, Maura
discovers bloodstains in one of the homes, and she becomes
convinced that someone is watching them. Someone who
doesn't want intruders.
When Detective Jane Rizzoli finds out her friend is
missing, she and her husband, FBI agent Gabriel Dean, head
to Wyoming. When they discover bodies in the charred
wreckage of a car -- one a female about Maura's age -- with
Maura's baggage nearby, Jane reluctantly accepts the
obvious conclusion, despite a few small details that just
don't feel right. As she prepares to bury her friend back
in Boston, Jane finds out on the day of the funeral that
the body is not Maura's. She and Gabriel head back out
west -- but are they already too late?
This book starts out a bit slowly, like a roller coaster
going up that first hill, but once it hits the other side,
readers are in for a wild ride of breathtaking twists and
turns. Both storylines are nicely balanced, and while
Maura's has the most action and danger, Rizzoli's race
against time to find her friend is just as gripping. Part
chiller, part adventure, part mystery, all entertaining,
this book is another stellar entry in the Rizzoli & Isles
series, which belongs in every thriller lover's library.
Times bestselling author Tess Gerritsen’s relentless,
inventive novels take readers on pulse-racing thrill rides
that are as satisfying as they are heart-stopping. Now, in
this edge-of-your-seat suspense novel, a mysteriously
isolated town stands abandoned as a silent watcher
In Wyoming for a medical conference, Boston
medical examiner Maura Isles joins a group of friends on a
spur-of-the-moment ski trip. But when their SUV stalls on a
snow-choked mountain road, they’re stranded with no help in
As night falls, the group seeks refuge from the
blizzard in the remote village of Kingdom Come, where twelve
eerily identical houses stand dark and abandoned. Something
terrible has happened in Kingdom Come: Meals sit untouched
on tables, cars are still parked in garages. The town’s
previous residents seem to have vanished into thin air, but
footprints in the snow betray the presence of someone who
still lurks in the cold darkness—someone who is watching
Maura and her friends.
Days later, Boston homicide
detective Jane Rizzoli receives the grim news that Maura’s
charred body has been found in a mountain ravine. Shocked
and grieving, Jane is determined to learn what happened to
her friend. The investigation plunges Jane into the twisted
history of Kingdom Come, where a gruesome discovery lies
buried beneath the snow. As horrifying revelations come to
light, Jane closes in on an enemy both powerful and
merciless—and the chilling truth about Maura’s
Plain of Angels, Idaho
She was the chosen one.
For months, he had been studying the girl, ever since she
and her family had moved into the compound. Her father was
George Sheldon, a mediocre carpenter who worked with the
construction crew. Her mother, a bland and forgettable
woman, was assigned to the communal bakery. Both had been
unemployed and desperate when they’d first wandered into his
church in Idaho Falls, seeking solace and salvation.
Jeremiah had looked into their eyes, and he saw what he
needed to see: lost souls in search of an anchor, any anchor.
They had been ripe for the harvest.
Now the Sheldons and their daughter, Katie, lived in Cottage
C, in the newly built Calvary cluster. Every Sabbath, they
sat in their assigned pew in the fourteenth row. In their
front yard they’d planted hollyhocks and sunflowers, the
same cheery plants that adorned all the other front gardens.
In so many ways, they blended in with the other sixty-four
families in The Gathering, families who labored together,
worshiped together, and, every Sabbath evening, broke bread
But in one important way, the Sheldons were unique. They had
an extraordinarily beautiful daughter. The daughter whom he
could not stop staring at.
From his window, Jeremiah could see her in the school yard.
It was noon recess, and students milled about outside,
enjoying the warm September day, the boys in their white
shirts and black pants, the girls in their long pastel
dresses. They all looked healthy and sun-kissed, as children
ought to look. Even among those swan-like girls, Katie
Sheldon stood out, with her irrepressible curls and her
bell-like laughter. How quickly girls change, he thought. In
a single year, she had transformed from a child into a
willowy young woman. Her bright eyes, gleaming hair, and
rosy cheeks were all signs of fertility.
She stood among a trio of girls in the shade of a bur oak
tree. Their heads were bent together like the Three Graces
whispering secrets. Around them swirled the energy of the
school yard, where students chattered and played hopscotch
and kicked around a soccer ball.
Suddenly he noticed a boy crossing toward the three girls,
and he frowned. The boy was about fifteen, with a thatch of
blond hair and long legs that had already outgrown his
trousers. Halfway across the yard, the boy paused, as though
gathering up the courage to continue. Then his head lifted
and he walked directly toward the girls. Toward Katie.
Jeremiah pressed closer to the window.
As the boy approached, Katie looked up and smiled. It was a
sweet and innocent smile, directed at a classmate who almost
certainly had only one thing on his mind. Oh yes, Jeremiah
could guess what was in that boy’s head. Sin. Filth. They
were speaking now, Katie and the boy, as the other two girls
knowingly slipped away. He could not hear their conversation
through the noise of the school yard, but he saw the
attentive tilt of Katie’s head, the coquettish way she
flicked her hair off her shoulder. He saw the boy lean in,
as though sniffing and savoring her scent. Was that the
McKinnon brat? Adam or Alan or something. There were so many
families now living in the compound, and so many children,
that he could not remember all their names. He glared down
at the two of them, gripping the window frame so tightly
that his nails dug into the paint.
He pivoted and walked out of his office, thumping down the
stairs. With every step, his jaw clenched tighter and acid
burned a hole in his stomach. He banged out of the building,
but outside the school yard gate he halted, wrestling for
This would not do. To show anger was unseemly.
The school bell clanged, calling the students in from
recess. He stood calming himself, inhaling deeply. He
focused on the fragrance of fresh-cut hay, of bread baking
in the nearby communal kitchen. From across the compound,
where the new worship hall was being built, came the whine
of a saw and the echoes of a dozen hammers pounding nails.
The virtuous sounds of honest labor, of a community working
toward His greater glory. And I am their shepherd, he
thought; I lead the way. Look how far they had already come!
It took only a glance around the burgeoning village, at the
dozen new homes under construction, to see that the
congregation was thriving.
At last, he opened the gate and stepped into the school
yard. He walked past the elementary classroom, where
children were singing the alphabet song, and entered the
classroom for the middle grades.
The teacher saw him and jumped up from her desk in surprise.
“Prophet Goode, what an honor!” she gushed. “I didn’t know
you would be visiting us today.”
He smiled, and the woman reddened, delighted by his
attention. “Sister Janet, there’s no need to make a fuss
over me. I simply wanted to stop in and say hello to your
class. And see if everyone is enjoying the new school year.”
She beamed at her students. “Isn’t it an honor to have
Prophet Goode himself visiting us? Everyone, please welcome
“Welcome, Prophet Goode,” the students answered in unison.
“Is the school year going well for all of you?” he asked.
“Yes, Prophet Goode.” Again in unison, so perfect it sounded
as if it had been rehearsed.
Katie Sheldon, he noticed, sat in the third row. He also
noticed that the blond boy who’d flirted with her sat almost
directly behind her. Slowly he began to pace the classroom,
nodding and smiling as he surveyed the students’ drawings
and essays tacked on the walls. As if he really cared about
them. His attention was only on Katie, who sat demurely at
her desk, her gaze tipped downward like any properly modest
“I don’t mean to interrupt your lesson,” he said. “Please,
continue what you were doing. Pretend I’m not here.”
“Um, yes.” The teacher cleared her throat. “Students, if you
could please open your math books to page two oh three.
Complete exercises ten through sixteen. And when you’re
finished, we’ll go over the answers.”
As pencils scratched and papers rustled, Jeremiah wandered
the classroom. The students were too intimidated to look at
him, and they kept their eyes focused on their desktops. The
subject was algebra, something that he had never bothered to
master. He paused by the desk of the blond lad who had so
clearly shown an interest in Katie, and, looking over the
boy’s shoulder, he saw the name written on the workbook.
Adam McKinnon. A troublemaker who would eventually have to
be dealt with.
He moved on to Katie’s desk, where he stopped and watched
over her shoulder. Nervously she scribbled an answer, then
erased it. A patch of bare neck showed through a parting of
her long hair, and the skin flushed a deep red, as though
seared by his gaze.
Leaning close, he inhaled her scent, and heat flooded his
loins. There was nothing as delicious as the scent of a
young girl’s flesh, and this girl’s was the sweetest of all.
Through the fabric of her bodice, he could just make out the
swell of newly budding breasts.
“Don’t fret too much, dear,” he whispered. “I was never very
good at algebra, either.”
She looked up, and the smile she gave him was so enchanting
that he was struck speechless. Yes. This girl is definitely
Flowers and ribbons draped the pews and cascaded from the
soaring beams of the newly built worship hall. There were so
many flowers that the room looked like the Garden of Eden
itself, fragrant and shimmering. As the morning light beamed
in through the ocular windows, two hundred joyous voices
sang hymns of praise.
We are yours, O Lord. Fruitful is your flock and bountiful
The voices faded, and the organ suddenly played a fanfare.
The congregation turned to look at Katie Sheldon, who stood
frozen in the doorway, blinking in confusion at all the eyes
staring at her. She wore the lace-trimmed white dress that
her mother had sewn, and her brand-new white satin slippers
peeped out beneath the hem. On her head was a maiden’s crown
of white roses. The organ played on, and the congregation
waited expectantly, but Katie could not move. She did not
want to move.
It was her father who forced her to take the first step. He
took her by the arm, his fingers digging into her flesh with
an unmistakable command. Don’t you dare embarrass me.
She began to walk, her feet numb in the pretty satin
slippers as she moved toward the altar looming ahead. Toward
the man whom God Himself had proclaimed would be her husband.
She caught glimpses of familiar faces in the pews: her
teachers, her friends, her neighbors. There was Sister Diane
who worked in the bakery with her mother, and Brother
Raymond, who tended the cows whose soft flanks she loved to
pet. And there was her mother, standing in the very first
pew, where she had never stood before. It was a place of
honor, a row where only the most favored congregants could
sit. Her mother looked proud, oh so proud, and she stood as
regal as a queen wearing her own crown of roses.
“Mommy,” Katie whispered. “Mommy.”
But the congregation had launched into a new hymn, and no
one heard her through the singing.
At the altar, her father at last released her arm. “Be
good,” he muttered, and he stepped away to join her mother.
She turned to follow him, but her escape was cut off.
Prophet Jeremiah Goode stood in her way. He took her hand.
How hot his fingers felt against her chilled skin. And how
large his hand looked, wrapped around hers, as though she
were trapped in the grip of a giant.
The congregation began to sing the wedding song. Joyful
union, blessed in heaven, bound forever in His eyes!
Prophet Goode tugged her close beside him, and she gave a
whimper of pain as his fingers pressed like claws into her
skin. You are mine now, bound to me by the will of God, that
squeeze told her. You will obey.
She turned to look at her father and mother. Silently she
implored them to take her from this place, to bring her home
where she belonged. They were both beaming as they sang.
Scanning the hall, she searched for someone who would pluck
her out of this nightmare, but all she saw was a vast sea of
approving smiles and nodding heads. A room where sunlight
glistened on flower petals, where two hundred voices swelled
A room where no one heard, where no one wanted to hear, a
thirteen-year-old girl’s silent shrieks.