Winnie doesn’t remember the last time she felt anything below her neck. Her spine is severed at the seventh vertebrae, but thanks to implants from a sabotaged biomedical start-up, she has regained mobility. She is a prototype: a living, breathing—walking—demonstration of revolutionary technology that never made it to market.
Her disability has become her armor. Because she doesn’t register fatigue, she has trained relentlessly. Her hand, arm, and leg strength are off the scales for a woman, and she has honed self-defense techniques to channel that strength. She’s a modern-day Amazon who feels no pain.
When the sociopath who torpedoed the start-up sends killers to harvest the implants from her body, Winnie must team up with broken-down private investigator August Riordan to save both their lives—and derail sinister plans for perverse military applications of the technology.
Praise for the August Riordan series:
“Mark Coggins writes tight prose with a clean, unadorned style; he is a Hammett for the turn of the 21st century.” —Loren D. Estleman, author of Gas City
“Gritty… seamy… very funny. [Coggins] has given the form fresh life.” —National Public Radio
“Dry ice sarcasm… and plenty of nasty chuckles in route.” —Wall Street Journal
“Coggins’ private investigator August Riordan proves a worthy successor to the iconic Sam Spade… Heartily recommended.” —Library Journal
“I’ve been waiting a long time for a fresh look at the private eye story. Mark Coggins has delivered it here with Candy from Strangers. It’s original, it’s smart and it was good to the last page.” —Michael Connelly, author of the Harry Bosch novels
“Riordan and his creator… represent the new, 21st-century breed of writers and characters. ‘What’s happening with the private eye novel?’ is a perpetually popular question among the crime-fiction cognoscenti. Runoff is the answer.” —Stephen Miller, January Magazine
“While echoing Chandler and Hammett, Coggins advances the genre into the Internet era.” —Booklist
“Fast cars, nymphomaniac rich kids, billionaires with short attention spans and long money: a truer picture of Silicon Valley can’t be found.” —CNBC
“Po Bronson, for all his talents, did not catch the Valley’s entrepreneurial/venture capital lifeblood in The First Twenty Million Is Always the Hardest as unerringly as Coggins does in Vulture Capital.” —Salon.com
“Runoff by Mark Coggins is a smart, funny, spooky… often touching, always an entertaining romp through… San Francisco’s highways, byways, and alleys of corruption. (Hammett eat your hat and laugh.) It’s great fun and a must read.” —James Crumley, author of The Last Good Kiss