Close to the Bone hits forensic scientist Theresa MacLean where it hurts, bringing death and destruction to the one place where she should feel the most safe—the medical examiner’s office in Cleveland, Ohio, where she has worked for the past fifteen years of her life. Theresa returns in the wee hours after working a routine crime scene, only to find the body of one of her deskmen slowly cooling with the word “Confess” written in his blood. His partner is missing and presumed guilty, but Theresa isn’t so sure. The body count begins to rise but for once these victims aren’t strangers—they are Theresa’s friends and colleagues, and everyone in the building, herself included, has a place on the hit list.

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Publisher's Weekly describes Close to the Bone as "intricately plotted" and says "Black, who is a forensic scientist, certainly knows her field."

Kirkus writes: "By releasing surprises little by little, Black manages to fit both a whodunit and a police-chase thriller into a single bagged-and-tagged package."

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The Price of Innocence begins with Theresa and Frank caught in an explosion possibly aimed at a local inventor/entrepreneur, the northeast version of Bill Gates. Ignoring her bruises and forced to relinquish the investigation to the feds, Theresa tries to dive back into normalcy at work only to have a cop assassinated nearly at her feet. These two apparently unrelated cases begin to move closer and closer together as Theresa encounters the unpredictable world of methamphetamine production, an attractive and mysterious man, a circle of new money and power and a conspiracy of silence going back twenty years—the reach of which she could never have imagined.

Kirkus says: "Once again, Black constructs a puzzle that weaves olds crimes with new, always leaving room for one more twist."

Booklist says of The Price of Innocence: "Quick pacing, a keep-’em-guessing plot, plenty of dark humor, and a spunky, outspoken, whip-smart heroine make this a must-read for fans of Cornwall and Grafton."

Publisher's Weekly reports: "With only her gut to go on, she—and the reader—scud through a series of devilishly clever blind alleys and red herrings..."

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In Blunt Impact Theresa is caught in the knot of unlikely and conflicting human beings surrounding a tough but endangered little girl named Anna, better known as Ghost.
Ghost has a unique lifestyle, loved by her construction worker mother and disabled grandmother but constantly slipping out of her home to roam the back alleys of the large city. Nothing all that bad ever happens—until she witnesses her mother’s murder, as the beautiful young woman is thrown from the unfinished 23rd floor. Ghost will not rest until she learns the truth, which means that Theresa cannot rest until Ghost is safe.
The building itself is in turmoil, torn by controversy over its purpose as a new county jail. Add in OSHA whistleblowers and missing money, criminal elements using the site for their own purposes and a homely but smart district attorney who becomes more interested in Theresa than the intrigue, and Theresa has no choice but to hang on tight as she dangles over the abyss.

Kirkus (starred review) says: "Black handles multiple plots like a pro, building a story with almost as many layers as the new Cleveland jail."

Booklist says of Blunt Impact: " An intense plot, knuckle-biting suspense, a likable heroine, and a shock ending make for a thoroughly satisfying read."

Publisher's Weekly reports: "The bond that MacLean forms with Ghost lends human interest and few will guess the killer’s identity before the final desperate confrontation..."

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"Lisa Black writes with immediacy and unmatched authenticity, and Trail of Blood is a terrific story, too -- her best yet!"– Jeff Lindsay, NYT Bestselling author of Dexter is Delicious

KIRKUS likes Trail of Blood:  Black ... has a strong heroine in MacLean. There’s a dash of romance thrown in, but the real action is in the field, as MacLean and her cousin look into crimes decades apart. A smart step-by-step thriller.

BOOKLIST : “…[Black] generates suspense with alternating accounts of investigations present and past. A cast of complex, captivating characters is led by likable Theresa…."

LIBRARY JOURNAL: In this second novel in a new series (after Takeover), Black weaves a highly entertaining if somewhat improbable tale of drama and suspense. Fans of forensic thrillers will look forward to seeing more of her witty and likable heroine.—


Takeover is a thriller of the first order, a pulse-racing adventure that grabs you in the first chapter and has you sweating until the very end. Each time you catch your breath, Black adds a plot twist that that takes you down another devilishly clever path. - Mystery Scene

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