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The Fraud

(Carter Ross Mystery #6)

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  413 ratings  ·  69 reviews

In the most thrilling entry yet in Brad Parks's award-winning series, investigative reporter Carter Ross must chose who gets to live: him or his unborn child.

A rash of carjackings terrorizing Newark become newsworthy when one such theft ends in the murder of a wealthy banking executive. The affable, wisecracking Ross is assigned the story, but he's weary of only writing

Hardcover, 352 pages
Published July 7th 2015 by Minotaur Books (first published July 1st 2015)
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Tim The Enchanter
My Number 5 Best Read of 2015 and Silver Gavel for Best Novel of 2015

Posted to The Literary

Brad Parks Delivers his Best Yet - 5

I have been following Brad Parks since his first multi-award winning book, Faces of the Gone. I was immediately drawn to the funny and somewhat irreverent Carter Ross. After the previous novel, I felt the series had turned a corner. The characters and relationships began to mature and the stories began to break away from the formula of the first four
Our carefree investigative reporter Carter Ross has become a little more responsible now that there's a baby on its way. That doesn't mean Carter doesn't get in trouble, as shown in the opening chapter of Brad Parks' The Fraud, when he says in forty-three hours he has to walk into a room with two dangerous people in it, hoping to save his unborn child.

When the mother of Carter's child, managing editor for local news for the Newark Eagle-Examiner, Tina Thompson, asks him to look into a story
Sep 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Terrific writing ... the story moves right along, with just the right amount of detail, commentary, and occasional dry humor. Especially enjoyed that the protagonist is an investigative reporter. Definitely want to read the other books in the series!
Teena in Toronto
Sep 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Carter Ross is a reporter for a newspaper in New Jersey. Kevin Tiemeyer, a rich white businessman, had been shot and killed during a carjacking and Carter is assigned to the story. Rather than focus on Tiemeyer, Carter is curious to see if this carjacking was a one-off occurrence and discovers that it had recently happened to a Nigerian immigrant named Joseph Okeke. He starts to investigate Okeke, spending time with his ex-wife, daughter and girlfriend. He discovers that Tiemeyer and Okeke knew ...more
Aug 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first chapter opens w/Carter choosing b/w his life or his unborn child’s. It grabbed my attention!

Intense story. Complex mystery. Some red herrings that I didn’t catch.
As with the other books in the series, the narrative deepens as the plot & story slowly develop.

Because I did this on audio-I’ll reference that but the last 45 min of it were edge of your seat suspense. (probably the last few chapters in book form chpt 42-end) It cycles the action back to the first chapter.

I hope the
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I love Brad Parks, the author! His wit and characters are so smart. Carter Ross, his investigative reporter who truly investigates, is following leads to solve a rash of carjackings in the Trenton NJ area. Of course, he gets himself embroiled while finding the solution. When I mentioned that his writing makes me want to visit NJ, Parks replied, "Give Jersey a chance!"
Aninha Costa
I think the Carter Ross' series is kind of uneven and has highs and lows. This is one of the lows.
It's not bad, but it was kinda predictable and I think Carter's signature humour fell flat.
All in all, an OK read.
Lynn Farris
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
“The Fraud” by Brad Parks is the sixth book in the Carter Ross Mystery series. Brad Parks is the only author to have won crime fiction's coveted Shamus, Nero and Lefty awards. I also included his fifth book, "The Player," on my Best mystery books for book clubs 2014.

“The Fraud” opens with a question. “Would you give your life for your kid?” What if that child had not been born yet? This hypothetical question is what Carter Ross will face by the end of the story. We learn this in the first two
Nancy McFarlane
Apr 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Another great Carter Ross book.
Jan 13, 2020 rated it liked it
Three and a half stars.

Disappointing. I felt that the plotting on the this story and the execution were pretty bang on, but there were too many things that were off for me to give this a full four stars.

One problem I had was that there were a few foreshadowing moments where I could see exactly what was going to happen as a result. As soon as Blue Mask hid his money in Birdy's kitchen I knew it would be found by his Aunt. As soon as she found it I knew she was dead meat. This happened again with
LInda L
Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've read all the books in this series except for the first one. I think this was probably the best, but I did love The Good Cop as well. Carter was at his best in this one -- also got in more trouble than usual. Tina was her usual surprising self, as were Tommy, Buster, and Sweet Thang. Lots of bad guys, for whom killing someone is no big issue. Did not care for the names "Black Mask" and "Blue Mask" -- that was kind of dumb. But descriptive. Lots of stuff about carjackings, and yes, also ...more
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'm not even sure that I'm disappointed that this is the last in the Carter Ross series. While the stories still remain entertaining, Brad Parks just tries way too hard to get his political leanings ( Liberal. Very Liberal) into his characters. Mainly Carter Ross. If there's never another addition to the series, I won't be devastated. However, I've enjoyed them enough that if there is one, I'll probably read it.
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
This is not one of the author's best books in the series. I found myself furious with the incorrect spelling for breech birth (breach) consistently throughout this book. It doesn't take a lot of effort to find out the correct spelling for this type of presentation. Was there no editor involved in this book's publication? The story line and the characters were so superficial and so ridiculous that I almost stopped reading several times.
Not recommended!!
Andy Nasisse
Jul 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
You know..........Brad Parks is not only a good writer/story teller, he has such a personable way of conveying this that you wish you knew him! Anyone who can write this way must be pretty fun to be around!
Hazel Bright
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Yeah, I am really starting to wish I had never read anything by Brad Parks because I can't find a book I like anymore with Parks's work to use for comparison. Humorous, poignant, suspenseful, intelligent, insightful and fun. I hate you, Brad Parks. You are too good.
May 04, 2019 rated it did not like it
When you see an average rating of 4.2 and you find that the book is such a disappointment, you wonder what other people see. Half way I was tempted to ditch the book, and I persisted only to find that the storyline only got worse. Yes it was a fraud, and thankfully that was the end of that!
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
When you read several books in a series, you often get to know the characters as if they were friends. So reading about Carter Ross adds to this story of murder, carjackings and fraud. As usual, there were parts that made me laugh aloud and others that had me holding my breath.
retronerd  Steinkuehler
Jul 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Having read many hyped books that tease the reader into a false sense of eagerness to enjoy, it is always nice to have a Fall Back book ready. Parks writes just that kind of Fall Back book. You know you will not be disappointed and that it will be a reliable read. Yeah!!
Jun 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I am really enjoying this series, even though I am reading it out of order! The humor is great, even when the subject matter is serious. I look forward to reading more.
Diana Hill
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. Brad Parks does it again. Carter is my favorite news reporter. Car hijackings , murder and a new baby. Doesn’t get any better than that!
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this book and this author. Smart, irreverent tone to the main character, Carter Ross. Good read.
B Shea
Jun 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Another interesting Newark newspaper reporter Carter Ross story. This one is about a car jacking insurance fraud scheme and Brad Parks keeps the story moving and I love the humor he adds.
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I've read by Brad Parks, and I loved it! His writing style reminds me of Harlan Coben, and I've read every single one of his books. I have a new author to love!
Carolyn Dearing
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed the storyline and the fast pace it moved at.
Sep 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015-reads
This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader.

The ethical dilemma posited aside, I hated the first chapter. If I'd never read a Brad Parks book before, it might have caused me to move on to the next thing on my reading list. The cheap "in 43 hours, X, Y, and Z are going to happen..." ploy irritates me. Just get me invested with setting, plot, or character. Present one or all of these in an interesting manner and I'll get invested. Don't force the investment. Don't jam it down my
Nov 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The latest in the Carter Ross Mystery series finds investigative reporter Carter Ross nervously awaiting the birth of his first child. Thirty-three years old he is the investigative reporter for The Newark Eagle- Examiner. With more than a decade on the journalism beat, Carter Ross is all too aware that the newspaper industry is in crisis.

So too is the city of Newark, New Jersey, in some ways. Carjacking has always been a problem primarily because of the ease of access to the nearby port where a
Review Originally POsted: Traveling With T

*While you can read this as a stand-alone, I think to appreciate Carter, you need to read some of the earlier books!*

This book was sent to Traveling With T for review consideration.

The Fraud

Carter Ross has a nose for a story. It’s too bad that this particular story puts his unborn child’s life in danger.

After an affluent white businessman is killed in the process of a carjacking, Carter’s newspaper wants to run a story about it. Carter decides to take
3 no 7
Jul 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
The Fraud is Brad Park's newest book in the series of adventures of reporter Carter Ross. It is fun to read, easy to follow, and mixes laughter with crime and adventure.
Carter Ross continues his light-hearted adventures as he tries to keep his job as a newspaper reporter in an ever declining print world. He continues to juggle unsavory neighborhoods, newspaper bureaucracy, and the imminent birth of his child, interns as he searches for the “big” story that will help him and the paper. As usual,
Sherrill Watson
Nov 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Wisecracking Carter Ross, investigative reporter in a very contemporary (2015) novel about a newspaper where his job is being scaled back to meet the lack of readership. He is given a murder to investigate of a nice white guy from the country club. So he also checks out the murder of a nice black Nigerian immigrant, just to give the story contrast. Surprise! The two are related. I didn't believe that plot either. But anyway.

Would you put your life on the line for your unborn child even though
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International bestseller author Brad Parks is the only writer to have won the Shamus, Nero, and Lefty Awards, three of American crime fiction's most prestigious prizes. His books have earned starred reviews from every major pre-publication journal.

A father of two and a husband of one, Brad lives in Virginia, where he spends four hours a day at his local Hardee's, writing his novels. When not at

Other books in the series

Carter Ross Mystery (6 books)
  • Faces of the Gone (Carter Ross Mystery #1)
  • Eyes of the Innocent (Carter Ross Mystery #2)
  • The Girl Next Door (Carter Ross, #3)
  • The Good Cop (Carter Ross, #4)
  • The Player (Carter Ross, #5)