Jodi Compton’s New Thriller Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot

RIF thriller fans! We have a treat for you – an excerpt of Jodi Compton’s new novel, Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot, the gripping sequel to Hailey’s War. When we last left her, West Point dropout Hailey Cain had defied a powerful mobster to protect a pregnant teenager and child. The events of Hailey’s War nearly cost Cain her life, but Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot sees Hailey back in Los Angeles, now second-in-command to rising gangster Serena “Warchild” Delgadillo. At the heart of this thrilling novel is a complex case of stolen identity, ruthless motives, and violent crime that puts Hailey back on the road, with her old friend Warchild by her side, to reclaim her name and chase down the murderer who has taken it.

From Part One of Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot
by Jodi Compton

“Come on, baby! Head kick! Kick to the head!”

Being a good fighter: It’s not any one thing. Technique is a lot, of course. But size is too, because reach lets you hit opponents while staying out of range, and weight lets you put more force into the blows. It’s just physics: force equals mass times velocity.

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Kat threw her first hook and I dropped low over my heels, letting her fist graze over my head. The men whistled and jeered.

Experience matters. That’s a close cousin to technique but not the same thing, because experience also means a fighter who knows that bleeding stops, bruises heal, pain goes away. That lets you keep your head when things aren’t going your way.

Kat dug a low left hook into my ribs. I couldn’t get out of the way in time and had to absorb it. It wasn’t a very hard blow. Good. If that was all she had, it wasn’t enough.

A lot of people think that anger helps. I tend to think that’s a myth. An angry fighter with no skills may throw more punches, but flailing blindly will get you knocked out fast.

Confident now from landing a blow, Kat stayed in close, trying again to hammer my ribs. Mistake. I threw both my arms around her neck, taking advantage of her proximity.

The other thing that doesn’t help as much as people think? Brains. You hear about ‘thinking fighters,’ but those individuals are rare, and very, very good. Maybe for them, time seems to slow and they can anticipate, plan on the fly. I can’t; most of the guys I know couldn’t. The firstie who’d coached me and the rest of my company’s boxing team used to say, Learn as much as you can outside the ring, but when you’re in the ring, stop thinking. Let your muscles think for you, because your brain won’t do it fast enough.

Still clinching Kat’s neck, I threw my right knee into her midsection and both heard and felt the way it punished her. She would have doubled over, except that I put my hands on her shoulders, then shoved lightly to get her out at the end of my range, and threw my hardest straight right into her face.

I’ve heard men, experienced fighters, say they’ll sometimes block body blows with their heads. I believe them, but I’ve never done it. Next time you see a picture of a human skull, notice the gap, the absence of bone, at the nose. It’s a fantastically vulnerable place to get hit. Something about it goes straight to your brain and rattles you to the core. It’s hard to recover from.

Kat didn’t. She backed up, raised her arms against another blow, and then waved me off.

After she was out of the cage, the managers’s brother beckoned me to talk to him through the mesh of the cage. I went over.

“Short fight,” he said.

“Sorry.” But I wasn’t.

“You want to go again?” he said. “I’ve got another girl who’s ready.”

I wiped at a bit of hair that had come loose from my braids and fallen into my face. “Sure,” I said.

I was sitting on a bench lacing up my boots when I heard my cell phone buzzing. The number on the screen was Serena’s.

“Hey, esa, where are you?” she asked. Then, without waiting for an answer: “You shouldn’t be on the street, wherever you are. The cops are looking for you.”

That was fast, I thought, thinking of last night and the truck robbery. Then: “Wait a minute, just me? Why not you?”

“It’s not about last night,” Serena said. “A couple of people got killed, up in San Francisco.”


“You’re the suspect.”

“What? You’re kidding me, right?”

“No, it’s on the news,” Serena said.

“You mean, like last year, when I lived up there?”

“No, it was yesterday, they’re saying.”

“Well, then it’s a mixup,” I said. “It’s just somebody with the same name. My last name’s not uncommon, and my first was only the most popular -”

“I know that, esa, but it’s not just a name thing,” she insisted. “This is who they’re describing: Hailey Cain, 24 years old, blond hair, brown eyes, birthmark on the right cheekbone. And –“ she paused here, “Hailey, they’re saying that your thumbprint was on one of the used, what do you call ‘em, casings.”

That’s not possible.

I was silent so long that Serena said, “I know, Insula, I didn’t believe it either. It was Diana who saw it on the news first and called me, and I said, ‘No way, that can’t be right.”

Then she said, “The other thing, the big thing, is that one of the two vics was a policeman. Prima, they think you’re a cop killer.”

jodi-comptonJODI COMPTON is the author of the acclaimed novels Hailey’s War, The 37th Hour, and Sympathy Between Humans. She lives in California.

Visit Jodi at and Facebook.

“It’s true, I’m now on Facebook,” says Jodi Compton. “I’ve long been one of the people who say, ‘By the time I get there, it’ll be over.’ But I’ve launched a page, and Facebook is still standing.”

“I am taking my cue in this endeavor (getting onto Facebook, etc), from my gifted stablemate at Crown Publishing and the Karpfinger Agency, Sara J. Henry. She’s a Web-savvy debut novelist (Learning to Swim, a Read It Forward favorite) who was my roommate at Bouchercon in San Francisco. Sara and I both love crime fiction, dogs, and bicycles. Someday we’ll collaborate on a novel in which crimes are investigated by a bicycle-riding dog. In the meantime, check out this gifted writer at her site,”

About Kira Walton

Kira Walton

KIRA WALTON has been stalking books all her life as a college English teacher, bookseller, book club consultant, author, and editor.

  • Jan Kale

    I look forward to reading this! Sounds like a great book.

  • Rosemary Simm

    Jodi writes a very easy flowing mystery novel with good characters and high drama. Her previous books
    were quite enjoyable and I’m looking forward to reading this one.

  • Linda

    Ack! why am i always finding second novels of authors i haven’t heard of? now it’s two books instead of one. so many books, so little time…

  • Cindy Chavez

    I hope I get to read this book. I am going to look for the first book Hailey’s War. If the first is anything like what the 2nd books sounds like, I know I won’t be able to put them down. My house will just have to wait for it’s cleaning.

  • tanya

    sounds like a great book

  • Lauren Mosher

    Love to read! Would love to read this book!

  • Angie Antidormi

    Would love to read this book!

  • Jennifer

    Looks like a great book!!

  • jill

    Sounds like a great book! Would love to have a copy to donate to my local library. Funds are short all around, you know.

  • Jenny

    This sounds like a great read!

  • Kara Lowery

    Love it, would love to have this book. It would be even better to win it!! I love a good thriller I can’t put down.

  • Catherine Gallagher

    This book looks very interesting! Would love to read it!

  • Donna Kimbrell

    Love the Story! I found this great page on

  • Allison

    This sounds like a good book. I’ll have to see if I can find one around here.

  • Paola Mayorga

    I really want this book!

  • dawn wacek

    The book sounds great – I can’t wait to read it.

  • sandra

    love to read this book too!

  • Jill

    Intrigued! Cant wait to read more!

  • laura tuinder


  • laura tuinder

    i love to read stories that are inspiring

  • laura tuinder

    reading is fun

  • laura tuinder

    i love to read insprational books.

  • laura tuinder

    The story really has to get my attention or i will put it down.


    actually sounds pretty interesting I love a good book

  • Sarah Woods

    I love to read books like this!

  • Ariel Byrd


  • Krystal

    This book sounds great! I can’t wait to read it.

  • Rob Pride

    This book looks to be a great read.

  • melinda hengel


  • Sara J. Henry

    Thanks for the mention! I’ve read both this book and the one that comes before it, HAILEY’S WAR, and can recommend both. The character Hailey Cain is gutsy, complex, and memorable – perhaps my favorite female protagonist in current fiction – and the novels are among the most richly nuanced I’ve read, tightly plotted and paced, with a heck of an emotional punch.

  • Kim Lessey

    I have never read the first book, but I like series book. I will have to look for Hailey’s War. Thanks for the opportunity to win.

  • Tiffany

    Looking for some summer reads and found this site on a blog i cant wait to check it out

  • Kristjana

    Would like to read this book.

  • Lija Williams

    This book is definintely something I want to read! The title is so true….great idea to make people want to grab this book to find out what it’s all about. Glad I have a chance to read this book. Thanks!

  • doris

    i love to read any book i can and this one sounds very interesting

  • LKM1010

    Can’t wait until I get this thriller!!

  • Mary Martin

    looks interesting

  • Don

    sounds like my kind of reading can’t wait to read this one

  • Don

    can’t wait to get my hands on this book

  • Michelle Bachman

    wow I only read a little of it and now I wish I had the whole book to read, thanks for the sneak peek, cant wait to read this one.

  • Steven Elkins

    cool site

  • Leslie asher

    This story is a must to read; it sounds fascinating.

  • Courtney Thomerson

    Would love love love to read this and pass it on to my friends and family!

  • Amanda Greficz

    looks like a great story!

  • Lori Buday

    Wow! great sneak peek of the story! i hope to get a chance to read this book and then pass it on to my daughters!

  • kelly b

    looks like an interesting read

  • Ayla

    Sounds like a great book!



  • Barbara Battaglia

    …would love the opportunity of a first read!

  • Pattie Ann

    Even though I didn’t read the first
    book in this series, the author updated the reader in the beginning of the book. It was fast paced and had an interesting scenario of the characters being gang members and one of the main characters a white gang member who attended West Point. I am looking forward to her future books when Hailey will be working for Ford.

  • Lucy

    looks like a good read!

  • Lana Nesbitt

    LOVE the book. I read it in 1 1/2 days. I couldn’t put it down. After reading it I had no choice but to buy “Hailey’s War” Thanks read it forward!

  • Nancy Black

    Just finished my free copy from read it forward and it’s a huge hit with me.

    “Thieves Get Rich Saints Get Shot” by Jodi Compton

    Jodi Compton has written a mind ripping page grabbing novel.

    Halley Cain is a third year West Point Dropout and is ousted due to a brain tumor. Halley doesn’t know when to say “NO” to a command, request, or idea. In return West Point deems her unsatisfactory to lead.

    To reinvent herself she goes after Mobster Skouras. They capture, torture her cut off her finger. Halley is saved by the mobster’s daughter Tess D’Agostino.

    Halley ends up being a personal protector to her high school friend, turned career criminal, Serena (War-Child)

    Serena hijacks shipments of drugs,selling & making her own Oil of Chronic(dried marijuana in shaker bottles for the elite people)

    Halley and Serena plan a drug shipment heist. It goes as planned but instead of one shipment they rack up two almost within moments of each other..

    Halley is deep in the underground, no links to her old life. One more way of earning money is working the fights in “The Slaughterhouse”.

    After changing clothes in The Slaughterhouse Halley receives a cell phone call from Serena.

    “Cop Killer” Halley Cain is being seen on the live TV network at this moment.

    There is so much going on in Compton’s novel. A blind man in the park who may or not be a FBI agent. Who is Magnus Ford? A LAPD gang intelligence Officer? A fed? No one knew what he looks like.

    Another hair tugging puzzle in this novel is who is the person masquerading as Halley Cain right down to her birthmark on the cheek.

    Shake these diverse characters together and you have a rip roaring convergence of personalities, morals, and hidden agenda’s. Who do you trust?

    Halley Cain is my personal heroine slash version of Lee’s Child’s Jack Reacher.

    This is one well written taut tale. You can’t go wrong picking up a Jodi Compton novel.

    Thank you Read It Forward for a smashing tale.

  • Brenda

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the only real criticism I have is that the characters could have been more developed. That being said, Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot is a fast-paced, thrilling adventure.

    Hailey, aka Insula, is the likable and complex main character. She is a criminal with a heart-of-gold and high moral code. The book recounts her life through a series of flashback memories that left me wanting more back story, especially in regards to the supporting characters.

    The ending gives me hope that Jodi Compton will continue Hailey’s story. How will her health affect her? Will old enemies continue to hunt and haunt her? I would love to find out how she fares in her new situation and to see how her relationship with her new acquaintances plays out. A second book answering these questions as well as giving us more insight to the people that matter most to Hailey would be most welcomed.

    Hailey’s story engages from the first few sentences and keeps the reader riveted throughout. If you have a long weekend to sit on the beach or curl up on the couch, pick up Jodi Compton’s Thieves Get Rich, Saints Get Shot. You’ll be glad you did.

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