Bill Wile is an easygoing, hardworking guy who leads a
quiet, ordinary life. But that is about to change. One evening, after his usual
eight-hour bartending shift, he finds a typewritten note under the windshield
wiper of his car. If you don’t take this note to the police and get them
involved, I will kill a lovely blond schoolteacher. If you do take this note to
the police, I will instead kill an elderly woman active in charity work. You
have four hours to decide. The choice is yours.
It seems like a sick joke, and Bill’s friend on the police
force, Lanny Olson, thinks so too. His advice to Bill is to go home and forget
about it. Besides, what could they do even if they took the note seriously? No
crime has actually been committed. But less than twenty-four hours later, a
young blond schoolteacher is found murdered, and it’s Bill’s fault. Now he’s
got another note, another deadline, another ultimatum, and two new lives
hanging in the balance.
Suddenly Bill’s average, seemingly innocuous life takes on
the dimensions and speed of an accelerating nightmare. Because the notes are
coming faster, the deadlines growing tighter, and the killer becoming bolder
and crueler with every communication, until Bill is isolated with the
terrifying knowledge that he alone has the power of life and death over a
psychopath’s innocent victims. Until the struggle between good and evil is
intensely personal. Until the most chilling words of all are: The choice is
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