The Bullet

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Published by: Gallery Books
Release Date: December 8th, 2015
Pages: 384
ISBN13: 978-1476769837


Two words: The bullet.

That’s all it takes to shatter her life.

Caroline Cashion is beautiful, intelligent, a professor of French literature. But in a split second, everything she’s known is proved to be a lie.

A single bullet, gracefully tapered at one end, is found lodged at the base of her skull. Caroline is stunned. It makes no sense: she has never been shot. She has no entry wound. No scar. Then, over the course of one awful evening, she learns the truth: that she was adopted when she was three years old, after her real parents were murdered. Caroline was there the night they were attacked. She was wounded too, a gunshot to the neck. Surgeons had stitched up the traumatized little girl, with the bullet still there, nestled too deep among vital nerves and blood vessels to remove.

That was thirty-four years ago.

Now, Caroline has to find the truth of her past. Why were her parents killed? Why is she still alive? She returns to her hometown and she meets a cop who lets slip that the bullet in her neck is the same bullet that killed her mother. Full-metal jacket, .38 Special. It hit Caroline’s mother and kept going, hurtling through the mother’s chest and into the child hiding behind her.

She is horrified—and in danger. When a gun is fired it leaves markings on the bullet. Tiny grooves, almost as unique as a fingerprint. The bullet in her neck could finger a murderer. A frantic race is set in motion: Can Caroline unravel the clues to her past, before the killer tracks her down?


“Bacon can’t cure everything. That’s one of the lesser discoveries Caroline Cashion, a 37-year-old Georgetown University French literature professor, makes in this heady thriller from former NPR correspondent Kelly, her second novel after 2014’s Anonymous Sources. A life-changing revelation on her MRI—there’s a bullet she has no clue about lodged in her neck—launches the likable and normally unflappable academic, whom Jane Austen would have found a kindred spirit despite her Salma Hayek looks, into a distinctly uncharacteristic flurry of activity. She’s whisked back three decades to her childhood in Atlanta and a shocking, never-solved double homicide. En route, she finds romance with a sexy, country music–loving doctor, Will Zartman, who is so definitely not her type. Kelly pulls off the difficult feat of plotting an action-packed page-turner that remains within the bounds of believability.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

The Bullet makes a direct hit. Written with style and intelligence, the clever plot gains velocity until the final page.”
Valerie Plame, former CIA covert ops officer and author of BURNED

“Nonstop pacing, a touch of romance,and a heroine who’s full of surprises combine to create great thriller escapism for the Harlan Coben set.”

“A riveting, twisty tale of a woman whose search for her own identity leads her to seek vengeance against the killer who stole it from her.”
Hallie Ephron, author of NIGHT NIGHT, SLEEP TIGHT

“With an extremely likable narrator and twists and turns galore, The Bullet is at once a thriller, a medical mystery, and a study of how well we really know the people we love.”
Alice LaPlante, author of TURN OF MIND

“I’d kind of like a time machine so that I could have the wonderful premise of this book for my own!”
Jamie Mason, author of THREE GRAVES FULL and MONDAY’S LIE