Early on a September morning, a Cabernet bottle slips through Margaret Gordon's fingers and shatters on the floor of her Tampa home. She giggles. Red wine on linoleum is no laughing matter. Her lover displays his brutal intolerance for imperfection and beats her to death, bathes his latest victim, and cleans her house until it sparkles.
Days later, Charlotte Gordon discovers her sister was last seen in a seedy St. Petersburg bar with the Braves' hotheaded relief pitcher, Torch Traynor. When the police dismiss her amateur allegations, Charlotte becomes as obsessed with her sister's bizarre murder as the killer is with perfection. She abandons a lucrative career and poses as a freelance journalist to hunt the killer loose within the Atlanta Braves organization.
The relentless female protagonist pursues the manipulative murderer through baseball. A gruff ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION reporter helps Charlotte piece together the dreadful trail to a jet-setting neat-freak serial killer, suffering from severe obsessive-compulsive disorder. He preys on newfound lovers and one-night stands to calm enraged bouts of anxiety brought on by flawed performances on the field that fall below his rigid expectations.
Has Charlotte's obsession blinded her judgment? Charlotte is mugged on a dark Atlanta street, run off a desolate Georgia highway, and narrowly evades death as a SWAT sniper takes down a deranged gunman.
This report prepared by Norman Chastain