Going to the Bad

A Lilly Hawkins Mystery

Going to the Bad

Newshound Lilly Hawkins is back, and this time the story she’s chasing is her own.


Working as a TV news photographer at her hometown television station, Lilly has documented Bakersfield’s most violent crimes and tragic accidents. To stay sane and avoid burnout, she’s developed a wicked sense of humor and a very thick skin. For her, a vicious shooting is just another day on the job. But what if the victim is someone she loves? Thrown off balance by the brutal attack on her uncle Bud in her own home, Lilly decides to handle the tragedy the only way she knows how. Using all her TV station’s resources and her own considerable skills, Lilly dives headlong into the investigation. But even with the assistance of her well-meaning but eccentric coworkers, this story may prove her last. Because as Lilly untangles a history of her uncle’s misdeeds and betrayals, a clever killer is preparing to strike again. Can she break the story in time to prevent another murder, or will Lilly be the next victim?
  • Touchstone | 
  • 304 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781439155578 | 
  • August 2012
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Going to The Bad includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Nora McFarland. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


TV news photographer Lilly Hawkins is back, and this time the story she’s chasing is her own. It’s Christmas Eve, but Chief Photographer (“Shooter”) Lilly Hawkins and her comrades at KJAY-TV are experiencing anything but a silent night. From the moment the police scanner announces Lilly’s home address as a crime scene, life as she knows it is over. Murder has struck closer to home than she ever imagined, and the investigation leads Lilly to discover long-buried family secrets.  

Topics & Questions for Discussion 

1. At the beginning of Going to the Bad, Lilly is torn over how to respond to Rod’s marriage proposal after accidentally finding an engagement ring in his pocket. What does Lilly’s conversation with Leanore about her hesitation to marry Rod reveal about Lilly? If you have read other installments in the Lilly Hawkins series, how does this characterization compare with what you already know about Lilly?

2. see more

More Books from this Author

Hot, Shot, and Bothered
A Bad Day's Work

About the Author

Nora McFarland
Maryann Bates

Nora McFarland

Nora McFarland has worked for CNN and has an M.F.A. from USC’s school of cinema and television. She lives in Macon, Georgia.