There is, however, something missing. Namely, my acknowledgments.
These things happen. Putting together a book is a complex process. Now and again, something's bound to fall through the cracks. And I'm assured my acknowledgments will appear in later editions. But in the meantime, I thought I'd share them here. THE KILLING KIND traveled a long and winding road to publication, and many have helped it on its way. It'd be a shame if their efforts were to go unrecognized. So, without further ado...
A few years ago, Steve Weddle, editor of Needle: A Magazine of Noir, asked if I’d be interested in contributing a short story. I pitched him a couple ideas, and he pushed me to write the more ambitious of the two. The resulting story, “The Hitter,” was nominated for an Anthony Award, appeared in THE BEST AMERICAN MYSTERY STORIES 2011, and served as the basis for THE KILLING KIND. I think that means I owe Steve a drink.
Otto Penzler and Harlan Coben, editors of THE BEST AMERICAN MYSTERY STORIES 2011, deserve my thanks, too. Their faith in “The Hitter” played no small part in my decision to write THE KILLING KIND.
Shepherding Hendricks from short story to novel wasn’t easy—that guy’s not one for taking orders—but thankfully, I had some help along the way. THE KILLING KIND would be a pale shadow of itself without the guidance and wisdom of my agent, David Gernert, and my editor, Josh Kendall. Their fingerprints are all over its strongest moments, and I’m a better writer for knowing them.
David’s team at The Gernert Company has been a dream to work with—Ellen Goodson and Anna Worrall in particular. The same goes for the fine folks at Mulholland/Little, Brown—most notably Pamela Brown and Sabrina Callahan. And Ruth Tross of Mulholland UK has proven a delight as well.
I’m extremely grateful to Megan Abbott, David Baldacci, Chelsea Cain, Hilary Davidson, Joseph Finder, Simon Kernick, Owen Laukkanen, Stuart Neville, and Marcus Sakey for their early support of this novel—and to the crime fiction community at large for embracing me as their own and championing my work for years. It’s a hell of a thing to realize you’ve found your tribe.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank my family—Burns, Holm, and Niidas—for their unflagging support; rarely has a loved one’s life of crime been so readily embraced.
And finally, my deepest gratitude to my wife, Katrina, who helped set me on my true path and continues to light the way. Humbling though it is for this writer to admit, words fail to express how much that means to me.