"A clever, twisted, and utterly gripping read. Carrie Smith has created a winner of a series, and this new chapter may be the most surprising one yet."

— Alison Gaylin, USA Today bestselling author of WHAT REMAINS OF ME

Six months after her cancer treatment, Detective Claire Codella defies the media and her lieutenant to solve her most challenging case to date.


Days before Palm Sunday, the bloody corpse of senior churchwarden Philip Graves is found lying in the herb garden of historic St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. On first glance, his murder looks like a random act of big city violence, but it soon becomes clear that his death was the result of a meticulously calculated crime perpetrated by someone who knew him. What did Philip do to warrant such a merciless death?


The church rector, five vestry members, and a choir director are possible suspects. So are the ten men sleeping in the church homeless shelter. Struggling to share the case and maintain their personal relationship, detectives Claire Codella and Brian Haggerty, along with trusted detective Eduardo Muñoz, work around the clock to uncloak the desires, resentments, and secrets of the diverse group of New Yorkers drawn through the iron gate and into the hidden beauty of one little Romanesque church in Unholy City, the haunting third installment in Carrie Smith’s Claire Codella mysteries.

Praise for Unholy City


"Smith's first-rate police procedural provides plenty of likely suspects and a clever detective."

—Kirkus Reviews


"Sharp [and] fast-moving... A sure bet for fans of police procedurals."