352 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.1 in
October 8, 2013
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 1416544623
ISBN - 13: 9781416544623
From the Publisher
#1 New York Times bestselling author and Queen of True Crime Ann Rule delivers another gripping true-crime story—this time a shattering case of Christmastime murder off the coast of Washington State, with a shocking amount of drama, greed, sex, and scandal and no shortage of suspects.
With more than 50 million copies of her thirty-four books in print, from The Stranger Beside Me, her chilling personal account of knowing Ted Bundy, to fourteen hardcover books— including Small Sacrifices; Green River, Running Red; and Too Late to Say Goodbye—and sixteen collections in her #1 bestselling Crime Files series, Ann Rule is without a doubt “America’s best true-crime writer” (Kirkus Reviews). In Practice to Deceive, her first book-length investigative chronicle since In the Still of the Night, Rule unravels a shattering case of Christmastime murder off the coast of Washington State—presented with the clarity, authority, and emotional depth that Rule’s readers expect. It’s a case with enough drama, greed, sex, and scandal to be called “The Real Housewives of Whidbey Island,” but this was not reality television. This was murder: pure, cruel, ugly, and senseless. And someone had to pay the price.
Nestled in Puget Sound, Whidbey Island is a gem of the Pacific Northwest; accessible only by ferry and the soaring Deception Pass Bridge, it is known for its artistic communities and stunning natural beauty. Life there is low-key, insular, and the island’s year-round residents tend to know one another’s business. But when the blood-drenched body of Russel Douglas was discovered the day after Christmas in his SUV in a hidden driveway near Whidbey’s most exclusive mansions, the whole island was shocked. A single bullet between his eyes was the cause of death, but no one could imagine who among them could plot such a devious, cold-blooded crime. At first, police suspected suicide, tragically common at the height of the holiday season. But when they found no gun in or near the SUV, Russel’s manner of death became homicide. Like a cast of characters from a classic mystery novel, a host of Whidbey residents fell under suspicion.
Brenna Douglas was Russel’s estranged and soon-to-be-ex wife, who allowed him to come home for a Christmas visit with their children. The couple owned the popular Just B’s salon. Brenna’s good friend Peggy Sue Thomas worked there, and Brenna complained often to her that Russel was physically and emotionally abusive. Peggy Sue’s own life has been one of extremes. Married three times, hers is a rags-to-riches-and-back-again tale in which she’s played many roles: aircraft mechanic, basketball coach, the “drop-dead gorgeous” beauty queen as a former Ms. Washington, Las Vegas limousine driver, million-dollar horse breeder, wealthy divorcée. But in 2003, her love affair with married guitarist Jim Huden led the two Whidbey Island natives to pursue their ultimate dreams of wealth and privilege—even at the expense of human life.
Unravel the tangled web woven by Russel Douglas’s murder in Practice to Deceive, the newest heart pounding true-crime tour de force from Ann Rule.
About the Author
Ann Rule was born on October 22, 1935 in Lowell, Michigan. She was surrounded by family following careers in law enforcement. Her grandfather and uncle were sheriffs in Michigan, another uncle was a medical examiner and a cousin was a prosecutor. She spent her summers with her grandparents doing volunteer work in the local jail. She eventually graduated from Coatesville High School then attended the University of Washington. She majored in creative writing, along with minors in criminology, penology and psychology. She extended her education for two more years at High Line Community College by taking criminal courses such as crime scene investigation, to include photography, police administration and several others. After proving her ability in several magazines, including Master Detective, Inside Detective, Front Page Detective, and Office Detective she was invited to start writing under her own name instead of the male name she was using, but decided to keep the pen name at that time in the interest of protection for herself and her family from her subjects. She came to prominence with her first book, The Stranger Beside Me, about serial killer Ted Bundy. At the time she started researching the book, the murders were still unsolved. In the course of time, it became clear that the killer was Bundy, her friend and previous colleague on the suicide hotline at the King County Crisis Clinic. She has also met and interviewed a number of other serial killers in the course of resea