Grove Press
Atlantic Monthly Press
Atlantic Monthly Press

House Arrest

by Mike Lawson

In the thirteenth book in Mike Lawson’s celebrated series, Joe DeMarco finds himself on the wrong side of an investigation—in the wake of a political assassination, he’s been framed as the killer.

  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Page Count 352
  • Publication Date February 18, 2020
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-4835-3
  • Dimensions 5.5" x 8.25"
  • US List Price $16.00
  • Imprint Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Page Count 336
  • Publication Date February 05, 2019
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-2930-7
  • Dimensions 6" x 9"
  • US List Price $26.00
  • Imprint Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Publication Date February 05, 2019
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-4702-8
  • US List Price $16.00

About the Book

In the thirteenth book in Mike Lawson’s celebrated series, Joe DeMarco finds himself on the wrong side of an investigation—in the wake of a political assassination, he’s been framed as the killer.

As the fixer for Congressman John Mahoney in Washington, D.C., Joe DeMarco has had to bend and break the law more than a few times. But when Representative Lyle Canton, House Majority Whip, is found shot dead in his office in the U.S. Capitol and DeMarco is arrested for the murder, DeMarco knows he’s been framed. Locked up in the Alexandria Jail awaiting trial, he calls on his enigmatic friend Emma, an ex-DIA agent, to search for the true killer.

Emma’s investigation leads her to Sebastian Spear, the ruthless and competitive CEO of the multi-billion-dollar Spear Industries. Spear had a motive for killing Lyle Canton: Canton’s wife, Jean, had once been Spear’s high school sweetheart and the one true love of his life—until Canton won her over. Now Jean was dead, killed in a car crash while driving drunk, and Spear blamed Canton for the accident. But the case the F.B.I. has built against DeMarco is airtight, and not a single piece of evidence points to the grieving CEO. Using her cunning and her D.C. connections, Emma sets out to prove that Spear has been using some fixers of his own.

Featuring crimes of passion, corporate corruption, and partisan feuds, House Arrest is a gripping, timely political thriller, and one of Lawson’s best books yet.

Praise for Mike Lawson and the Joe DeMarco series

“Lawson [is] a reliably excellent writer . . . As always, Lawson’s plotting is ingenious and his characters memorable.”—Adam Woog, Seattle Times, on House Rivals

“Joe DeMarco, ‘fixer’ for Speaker of the House John Fitzpatrick Mahoney, is shrewd, tough, discreet, and resourceful . . . Lawson creates multifaceted characters . . . [and] the pacing is relentless.”—Booklist

“Mike Lawson shows every understanding of the skill required of a thriller writer to keep a reader fully engaged and utterly thrilled.”—Guardian

“Lawson writes a mean thriller and has a sense of humor that hurts.”—Independent (UK)

“Lawson has a true insider’s insight about real-world spinelessness, venality, and corruption that have taken the place of moral courage and true leadership on Capitol Hill . . . a fine ear for dialogue . . . [and] a good eye for irony.” —Washington Times

“Mike Lawson . . . should be a fixture on the bestseller lists, if not a household name . . . Lawson has a deceptively smooth, low-key style that is perfect for the stories he tells . . . Mike Lawson is the only writer I know who comes close to matching the stories of the great Ross Thomas, the finest thriller writer to ever roll a blank page into an Underwood.” —Strand Magazine, on House Reckoning

“A great novel from a great author! . . . Equal parts funny, clever and cool, this book will make your heart race and your mind ponder.” —Lisa Gardner, on House Divided

“A compelling story of vengeance. Lawson is a gifted master.” —Rick Mofina, on House Reckoning

As Emma had no answer to Agent Peyton’s question, she asked a question of her own: “Agent Peyton, have you considered the possibility that someone may be trying to frame DeMarco for Canton’s murder?”

“You know, John Mahoney said the same thing and I’ll tell you what I told him. In my twenty-five years in the Bureau, I’ve never heard of a single person being framed for a crime.”

“Well, how would you have heard?” Emma said. “If the frame was perfect an innocent man would be sent to jail and no one would ever know.”

“Yeah, but I’ve never even heard of a botched frame. Nor can I remember a defense attorney ever making a plausible argument in court that a client was framed. Mistaken identity, yes. Framed, no. People are framed in movies.”

When Emma didn’t immediately respond, Peyton said, “Let me ask you something, Emma. If a smart, rich person like you wanted someone dead, why would you do something as complicated as framing someone for the murder? Killing the guy yourself in some clever way would be simpler. Or if you couldn’t do it yourself, why not just hire a sniper to shoot the guy?”

“I’ll tell you why,” Emma said, “and the reason is you.”

“Me?” Peyton said.

“Yes. If the person I wanted to kill was a U.S. congressman I would know that the FBI would assign a man like you to the case, along with a hundred other agents, and you wouldn’t give up until you caught me. But if I framed someone and if you caught the person I framed immediately—which you did in the case of DeMarco—then I might get away with the murder because you’d no longer be hunting for me.”