There’s a killer on the road
His brain is squirming like a toad…
Jim Morrison, The Hitchiker
The Highway is the scariest book I’ve ever written.
Several years ago, while flying around America on a book tour, I picked up a newspaper someone had left on the next seat in the departure lounge and read a small item detailing the creation of a “Highway Serial Killer Task Force” by the FBI. The few factoids mentioned in the story were chilling. The FBI claimed there hundreds of missing women throughout the United States, most of them truck stop prostitutes. The murderers were likely long-haul truckers. Law enforcement guessed there were ten to fifteen (and possibly more) serial killers currently “working” on the nation’s highways. Only one had been caught.
To those of us who live in rural America where every journey involved hundreds of miles of driving, there is a very real love/hate relationship with the operators of those massive trucks.
As I did more research – secretly joining trucker forums on the internet, hitching a ride on a tractor-trailer from Billings, Montana to Chicago, interviewing truckers about the secret world of long-haul trucking – the novel began to take shape. Sheriff’s department investigator Cody Hoyt (Back of Beyond) would return, only this time assisted by a novice partner named Cassie Dewell. They’re in pursuit of a highway serial killer known as the Lizard King who may have abducted Danielle and Gracie Sullivan, the sisters from Back of Beyond on a remote highway in Montana.
The entire thriller takes place in less than 24 hours and is told from the point of view of Cassie, Cody, Gracie, and the truck driver.
You may never want to drive cross-country again.
The Highway is available in paperback from 8 May 2014 from Head of Zeus.