A Knife's Edge

Book Cover



Eliot Parker

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Six months after a drug cartel infiltrated Charleston, Ronan McCullough continues to fight the drug war that plagues the city. His investigations are halted when the body of a mutual acquaintance, Sarah Gilmore, is found in the trunk of a burning car. McCullough discovers secrets lurking in her past



Short Summary

Two men are meeting under a train tussle bridge on a cold day in Charleston, West Virginia. One of the men was hired to attack a woman, which he did, but she managed to escape. The other man, furious with the mistake, taunts the first man and eventually shoots him.

Ronan is able to kill the man responsible for all of the crimes in the story, but Ronan also discovers the safe house has been encased with trip wire, which exploded as police arrive.


Charleston, West Virginia

Based on a True Story


Plot - Premise

Overcoming Monster/Villain,Quest,Tragedy

Plot - Other Elements

Meaningful Message,Twist

Mature Audience Themes

Extreme Violence, Language/Profanity

Main Character Details

Name: Ronan McCullough

Age: 42

Gender: Male

Role: Protagonist

Key Traits: Aggressive,Complex,Confident,Heroic,Lone Wolf,Secretive,Outspoken,Masculine

Additional Character Details

Name: Ty Andino

Age: 27

Gender: Lgbt

Role: Sidekick

Key Traits: Charming,Confident,Decisive,Empathetic,Faithful,Gracious,Honorable,Leader,Sexy,Selfless,Skillful,Romantic

Additional Character Details

The author has not yet written this

Additional Character Details

The author has not yet written this

Development Pitch

Trouble has a way of finding middle-aged Charleston Police Department Sergeant Ronan McCullough. While he appears in uniform at the dedication for a new children’s cancer center, it’s to support his boyfriend, Ty, an ER nurse. But those plans change when a vehicle slams into the building. Moments later, he discovers the driver slumped over the wheel, the victim of a gunshot. And in the trunk, the butchered body of Sarah Gilmore, a woman with curious ties to Ty and a key witness in a seemingly unrelated case. Ronan is a cop who is undercover in more ways than one. McCullough’s life is a tangle of secrets. As a plainclothes operative in Charleston’s Metro Drug Unit, his anonymity is essential. More interestingly, he’s a closeted gay man who’s secret is closely guarded from the rest of the department by his investigative partner, Eric. The quest to uncover Sarah Gilmore’s true identity and what ultimately led to her death is more than enough for most readers, especially as Ronan takes potentially explosive professional and personal risks to gain access to people and information. The book is at its best when any of Ronan’s secrets are threatened. Early on, he’s visibly unnerved when a hospital resident recognizes him from news coverage, which Parker writes brilliantly without too much fanfare, letting the tension build until they are superseded by higher stakes. Ultimately, the book is about secrets – those that Ronan keeps, and those that he uncovers in the line of duty. It’

About The Author

Eliot Parker is the author of four thriller novels. A graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with his M.F.A. in creative writing, Eliot is a recipient of the West Virginia Literary Merit Award, and his novel Fragile Brilliance was a finalist for the Southern Book Prize in Thriller Writing. His novel Code for Murder was bronze winner in genre fiction by America BookFest in 2018, and his most recent novel, A Knife’s Edge, was an honorable mention at the 2019 London Book Festival. He is the host of the podcast program “Now, Appalachia,” heard on the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network. A native of Charleston, West Virginia, Eliot teaches writing at the University of Mississippi and currently resides in Oxford, Mississippi and Chesapeake, Ohio.

Target Audiences

Age: 18-34,35-54,55+

Target Gender: Female Leaning,Male Leaning,LGBT Leaning

Group Specific

Information not completed

Publishing Details

Status: Yes: with a Publisher

Publisher: Headline Books

Year Published: 2018

Hard Copy Available