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Extended Audio Sample Stalking Susan Audiobook, by Julie Kramer Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 5 3.57 (35 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Julie Kramer Narrator: Bernadette Dunne Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Riley Spartz Series Release Date: August 2008 ISBN: 9781415949115
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Inside the desperate world of TV ratings, an investigative reporter discovers that a serial killer is targeting women named Susan and killing one on the same day each year.

Television reporter Riley Spartz is recovering from a heartbreaking, headline-making catastrophe of her own when a longtime police source drops two homicide files in her lap in the back of a dark movie theater. Both cold cases involve women named Susan strangled on the same day, one year apart. Last seen alive in one of Minneapolis’s poorest neighborhoods, their bodies are each dumped in one of the city’s wealthiest areas. Riley senses a pattern between those murders and others pulled from a computer database of old death records. She must broadcast a warning soon, especially to viewers named Susan, because the deadly anniversary is approaching. 
But not just lives are at stake— so are careers. 
November is television sweeps month, and every rating point counts at Channel 3. Riley must go up against a news director who cares more about dead dogs than dead women, a politician who fears negative stories about serial killers will hurt the city’s convention business, and the very real possibility that her source knows more about the murders than he is letting on. 
When Riley suspects the killer has moved personal items from one victim to the next as part of an elaborate ritual, she stages a bold on-air stunt to draw him out and uncovers a motive that will leave readers breathless.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “This is a fast-paced and nicely characterized debut that will appeal to fans of Linda Fairstein and Laura Lippman.”

    Library Journal

  • “[An] impressive debut…Readers will look forward to seeing a lot more of the appealing Riley.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “[A] lively and fast-paced debut…Kramer writes with heart and pizzazz, and her believable heroine makes the well-worn concept feel fresh. [Her] past as a TV producer lends authority to an entertaining story.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Riley Spartz is a classic spunky investigator. She’ll have readers cheering for her gutsy determination to stop the killings and boost her ratings.”

    USA Today

  • “A snappily paced debut thriller…Truly scary no matter what your name is.”

    People

  • “Dazzling…Readers who enjoy Janet Evanovich will soon be stalking Julie Kramer.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • Dazzling…. Readers who enjoy Janet Evanovich will soon be stalking Julie Kramer. Chicago Tribune
  • A rocking good story…. Chilling, twisty, and clever. Kathy Reichs
  • A snappily paced debut thriller.... Truly scary no matter what your name is. People
  • Riley Spartz is a classic spunky investigator. She'll have readers cheering for her gutsy determination to stop the killings and boost her ratings. USA Today
  • Stalking Susan is a fantastic debut. Julie Kramer has crafted a thriller that will get your heart racing. Vince Flynn
  • A 2009 Mary Higgins Clark Award Finalist
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A 2009 Barry Award Finalist for Best First Novel
  • A 2009 Anthony Award Finalist for Best First Novel
  • A 2009 Shamus Award Nominee for Best First Novel

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susanlk | 2/4/2014

    " I loved this book! I've had Julie Kramer on my list of authors to read for several years & she didn't disappoint. Riley Spartz is an on air newscaster for a tv station in Minneapolis, MN. She's an investigative reporter who's often in trouble with her bosses because she's tenacious in pursuit of her story--often bending journalism ethics or skirting laws. She has a possible love interest in a retired police officer but first she must come to terms over the violent death of her husband, a state trooper who was killed in the line of duty. There is lots of action in the book & the characters are easy to root for. The author lives in MN & Twin Cities landmarks, streets, & restaurants are featured prominently in her story. She's written a series of books featuring Riley--I can't wait to start the next one! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy | 2/2/2014

    " A good read after some pretty intense - heavy reads. I always appreciate a book that truly is a relaxing read ... and the references to Minneapolis / St. Paul were a fond memory plus. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elaine | 1/12/2014

    " This is an intriguing story about a tv reporter who teams up with an ex-cop to solve an old (suspected) serial murder. There is also a side story regarding a vet who mistreats animals. Very interesting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Krystal | 12/28/2013

    " Loved this book and cannot wait to read the next one!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Linda | 12/27/2013

    " A typical who-dunit but this time from a TV reporter's point of view. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bridget | 12/25/2013

    " If I could give it 2.5 stars, I would. I think most of the reason I enjoyed this book was because it was set in my "backyard" (Minneapolis). I knew who the killer was really early on, and parts of the book went really slow. Overall, not a bad mystery, just not a really good one either. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kath | 12/21/2013

    " I enjoyed this novel about a TV News reporter who solves an old case. Reminds me of the "Alphabet" mystries by Sue Grafton. This is the first of 4 in the series. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sue | 12/3/2013

    " Very good for a first novel. Fast moving and held my interest till the end. It was fun reading about local places. I will definitely read the next in the series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emily | 12/2/2013

    " Less wisecracking than Stephanie Plum, but with a lot more substance. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stacy McKitrick | 11/17/2013

    " It captured me more than I thought it would (I'm not a fan of first person stories, yet I seem to read a lot of them!) and I could easily read the next in the series, not that I NEED to (thank goodness - this book actually ended - YAY). Certainly held my attention and made it hard to put down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jane | 8/18/2013

    " Set in Mpls., so fun read for the details and local references. Fast read, some good twists. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy | 7/20/2013

    " This book held my attention. It took place in the cities so it was fun to hear places I recognize, but I guessed the killer right away. But it kept me interested. I'll read the second one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karla | 6/7/2013

    " There is a reason why Stalking Susan beat out Sandford and Krueger for this year's Minnesota Book Award---read it and you'll discover why. Great first book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan Jorissen | 5/29/2013

    " I chose it for obvious reasons. It was set in the Twin Cities which is nice because you can visualize the area "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Suzanne Dix | 4/18/2013

    " Great new (new for me) series to dive into. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessica | 1/7/2013

    " A good mystery, although it's completely obvious who the killer is as soon as the character is introduced. I liked the fact that the protagonist is an investigative news reporter. The scenes that talk about news reporting/tv are interesting because it's an area I know very little about. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Steve | 10/11/2012

    " I almost didn't read past chapter 1. The author introduced her protagonist like Garrison Keeler and Guy Noir. But then she really surprised me a few chapters later and I really enjoyed it. It was a fun, quick read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Barbara | 9/26/2012

    " Adequate serial killer thriller/mystery. Our heroine, TV news reporter Riley Sparks, in not TSTL, but she does some boneheaded things. Nice peek at the behind the scene workings of a TV news dept. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy Hausladen | 5/28/2012

    " I really enjoyed this book. We just read it for our book group and everyone liked it. The main character is a TV reporter. You find out much about the workings of a TV station. The author was previously a producer at a TV station in Minneapolis "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susanne Clower | 5/26/2012

    " In the end the murderer was a bit obvious but this was a fun read and gave a tasty peek at behind-the-scenes TV news. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dorothy Skobba | 2/3/2012

    " Loved it! And, loved the local flavor. :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rona | 1/22/2012

    " interesting book, with humor and good characters. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anne Fisher | 1/18/2012

    " For the first 5-10 pages I was inexplicably annoyed by the "voice" of the main character/narrator, it felt heavy-handed. But I got over it quickly and ended up really liking the book a lot. I have a soft spot for Minnesota books since I used to live in the twin cities. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Janet | 6/17/2011

    " Light and easy read. A little Janet Evanovich flavor but the main chgaracter is an investigative reporter. Not quite as far out as Evanovich but I enjoyed the book and I would read Julie Kramer again "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Doug | 5/1/2011

    " This book was a good read. It was fast-paced and well-written. The whodunit was cleverly hidden until the very end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kath | 4/12/2011

    " I enjoyed this novel about a TV News reporter who solves an old case. Reminds me of the "Alphabet" mystries by Sue Grafton. This is the first of 4 in the series. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tiina | 3/14/2011

    " Great read! This book was hard to put down once I'd started it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Steve | 2/18/2011

    " I almost didn't read past chapter 1. The author introduced her protagonist like Garrison Keeler and Guy Noir. But then she really surprised me a few chapters later and I really enjoyed it. It was a fun, quick read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rjboudr4 | 2/5/2011

    " I enjoyed it, especially interesting since the story takes place in Minneapolis. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 1/22/2011

    " I really enjoyed this book, I thought it was very well written. The jacket referred to this character, Riley Sparks, as similar to Janet Evanovich characters, and that was misleading. The author was a WCCO investgative reporter, and the story takes place in MN. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara | 1/14/2011

    " Nice easy read, I liked Riley, the main character, and its always fun to read books based in the Twin Cities. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lois | 12/20/2010

    " It takes place in the Twin Cities so it's fun! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cheryl S. | 11/28/2010

    " Enjoyed this quite a bit not only because it's a good story, but it's set in very familiar territory. Will be looking for the next two books in the series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Petra | 11/20/2010

    " This was a really fun book to read since it was set in Minneapolis. It was fun to read familiar street names, areas, cities, parks, and restaurants that were included in the book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rona | 10/4/2010

    " interesting book, with humor and good characters. "

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About the Author
Author Julie KramerJULIE KRAMER is a freelance television news producer for NBC’s Today show, Nightly News, and Dateline. Prior to that, she was a national award-winning investigative producer for WCCO-TV in Minneapolis. She lives in White Bear Lake, Minnesota, with her husband and sons.
About the Narrator

Bernadette Dunne is the winner of numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards and has twice been nominated for the prestigious Audie Award. She studied at the Royal National Theatre in London and the Studio Theater in Washington, DC, and has appeared at the Kennedy Center and off Broadway. She lives in Brooklyn.