The Heist, the highly-anticipated final installment to the To Catch A Leopard Series from New York Times bestselling author M.J. Rose and international bestselling author C.W. Gortner is available now!
To catch a leopard, wear diamonds.
A year after THE BAIT, Ania Throne is on the prowl. Gone into hiding, she’s planned her next move to perfection, intent on winning her dangerous game of cat-against-cat with the Leopard. But Ania doesn’t know that even the best-laid heists have hidden flaws.
Jerome Curtis has taken a job at a Hollywood movie studio to try and put his life back together. When a familiar face from the past shows up unexpectedly, Jerome realizes that much as he’s tried to forget her, there’s no escaping Ania. And this time, what she’s about to do could be her doom.
The heist is on. Jerome must join with Ania again to bring down the mastermind thief who’s dead-set on not getting caught. Passion and vengeance collide as father and daughter bait each other in a high-stakes gambit, with Jerome caught in the middle. Because no matter how much Ania has tried to keep her lover safe, she’s only brought him back into the center of her ploy— and the Leopard intends to take full advantage of it.
From the glamour of late 1950s Hollywood to a desperate chase in the ravines of Los Angeles, two leopards must hunt each other to the end. And only one of them can bring down its prey.
THE HEIST is the thrilling conclusion in the To Catch A Leopard series, a dramatic romantic caper that began with THE STEAL and THE BAIT.
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Start the series today with The Steal!
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/TheSteal
Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/3zdB2De
Apple Books: https://apple.co/2SGQhDV
Google Play: https://bit.ly/3fcnQp3
Keep reading for a look inside The Heist!
Three days before Christmas Eve, I leave my latest dead-end job standing guard at a third-tier jewelry shop, feeling like I have the snow-slush running in my veins.
“Have a lovely Christmas, Mr. Curtis,” calls the pretty blond secretary, whose name I never remember. It forces me to smile and say, “Yeah, you, too.” She’s been trying for weeks to get me to take her out, not openly but in that tight-skirt-and-bend-suggestively-over-the teapot kind of way. The jeweler is closed for the holiday. He’s made his profit selling low-end watches, necklaces, bracelets, and rings that would make Ania grimace at the shoddy craftsmanship and has a family to celebrate with. His secretary is single, like me, and desperate to remedy that.
I’m desperate to keep it that way.
Reaching my flat in Earl’s Court involves either the smelly Tube or a crowded, sauna-like bus ride. I decide to hop the Tube to avoid arriving in my flat covered in double-decker road splash, not that anything but a very dead plant and a bottle of whiskey is waiting for me there. I stand, gripping the overhead rail as flustered last-minute Christmas shoppers shove their way in with enough Harrods gift bags to bring joy to an orphanage. Everyone looks out of sorts and on the verge of panic in the lead-up to the big event of Christmas Day. The jabbing of elbows and utterances of “Pardon me, chap” as they fill the carriage with their packages—a few with the befuddled look of belated realization regarding how much they’ve overspent—rubs my nerves raw.
I need a drink. And a cigarette. And greasy fish and chips.
That’s going to be my Christmas extravaganza.
As I trudge out of the station toward my flat, Earl’s Court sparkles with Christmas lights, and people are either scrambling to get home with their armfuls of packages or going into the local pubs to drown their over-budget sorrows. I’d been hoping to maybe indulge my lead-up to the big event at the pub myself, but one look inside at the smoke-choked, clamoring mob, and I turn on my heel. Buying my fish and chips at a local stall, I begin eating out of the oily bag as I walk up the street to the nondescript post-war building and single-room apartment I call home.
I smell the cigarette smoke before I hear the voice. The smoke is sharp in the frigid air and has a distinct American tang to it, as does the voice.
“That stuff will kill you, you know. It’s batter and grease deep-fried over batter and grease.”
She’s leaning against my building, her cigarette tip glowing as she takes an inhale. For a paralyzing second, through some trick of the flickering streetlamp, I think it’s Ania, and my entire body goes numb. Then I blink. Ania never smokes, and she hated it when I did. And then the woman says, “Well? Is this any way to say hi to an old friend who’s been freezing her tuchus off waiting for you?”
Lauren Segal. The seafoam eyes that are always a little too direct. The mop of reddish curls, only tonight they’re groomed in a svelte swoop under her scarf. Pert nose with a smattering of freckles. Pert lips, too, very red. She always goes a little overboard on the lipstick when she uses it.
“Oh, hey.” I jolt toward her, feeling like a jerk for my lack of enthusiasm.
She grinds out her cigarette and gives me a smile. “Surprised to see me?”
“I am.” I force a return smile, and it feels all wrong on my face, like I’ve forgotten how. “I thought you weren’t coming back here until the new year. Or did I…?”
I fumble for my keys as she says, “No, you didn’t forget. I was supposed to come in February to set up advance press for The Treasure of Kilimanjaro, but we delayed the London premiere. I have a boatload of meetings instead, so I thought I’d hop over the pond early and see my favorite stranger.”
About M.J. Rose
M.J. Rose grew up in New York City mostly in the labyrinthine galleries of the Metropolitan Museum, the dark tunnels and lush gardens of Central Park and reading her mother’s favorite books before she was allowed. She believes mystery and magic are all around us but we are too often too busy to notice… Books that exaggerate mystery and magic draw attention to it and remind us to look for it and revel in it.
Rose is a the Co-President and founding member of International Thriller Writers and the founder of the first marketing company for authors: AuthorBuzz. She runs the blog, Museum of Mysteries.
In 1998, her first novel Lip Service was the first e-book and the first self-published novel chosen by the LiteraryGuild/Doubleday Book Club as well as the first e-book to go on to be published by a mainstream New York publishing house.
Rose has been profiled in Time magazine, Forbes, The New York Times, Business 2.0, Working Woman, Newsweek, and New York Magazine.
She has appeared on The Today Show, Fox News, The Jim Lehrer NewsHour, and features on her have appeared in dozens of magazines and newspapers in the U.S. and abroad, including USAToday, Stern, L’Official, Poets and Writers, and Publishers Weekly.
Rose graduated from Syracuse University and spent the ’80s in advertising. She was the Creative Director of Rosenfeld Sirowitz and Lawson and she has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.
Connect with M.J. Rose
About C.W. Gortner
C.W. Gortner holds an MFA in Writing with an emphasis on Renaissance Studies from the New College of California and a degree in fashion marketing. In his extensive travels to research his books, he has experienced life in a Spanish castle and danced in a Tudor great hall. Half-Spanish by birth, his novels have been translated in over 20 languages to date.
C.W. enjoys talking to book groups. To schedule a chat or find out more about his work
Connect with C.W. Gortner
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