Robin Burcell. Face of a Killer (2008) 381 pp.
FBI Special Agent Sydney Fitzpatrick—a forensic artist working out of the San Francisco field office—has long wondered about the truth of her father’s murder twenty years earlier. Johnnie Wheeler, the man convicted of the crime, is scheduled to be executed at San Quentin Prison in a few days. Against her family’s wishes and her own better judgment, Sydney goes to the prison to visit Wheeler, who has steadfastly maintained his innocence. After the interview, Sydney is convinced that there is more to the case and that key evidence has been suppressed. As she races against the impending execution, she uncovers secrets about her father’s military past—secrets with international implications that some people in very high places will stop at nothing to keep buried.
Setting: San Francisco