By Matt Hilton
Joe Hunter, ex Special Operations assassin, is living in Tampa after the death of a loved one. On this particular day, he spots two cops tailing him. Soon after confronting them, they are both killed by sniper bullets. Hunter is now on the run, contacting friends, including ex agents, who might help figure out who wants him dead. His old boss pops into the picture, showing him photos of recently murdered team members from a botched Columbian job seven years previous. He also shows Joe their equally dead families. Joe quickly jumps on the trail of a merciless professional killer and the man’s employer. But who is behind the killings is a surprise Joe may not survive.
This is good versus evil at its most basic level. You know going into it the bullets will fly and the blood will flow. It’s a good down to earth plot with the obligatory surprise.
Joe Hunter: Used to work Special Operations (usually assassinations) with the CIA, now works as a ‘vigilante’ taking care of bad guys, has lived in Tmapa for a year, drives an Audi A6, won’t wage war on women, brother is in witness protection, parents live in England, British accent, likes a P226 Sig Sauer
Jared ‘Rink’ Rington: Joe’s ‘official boss who runs a private investigations business, scar on his jaw from a serial killer, worked with Joe in Spec Ops, black hair, Japanese mother, Arkansas drawl, ex Army Ranger
Luke Rickard: professional killer, married, likes to terrorize his wife and women, blue eyes, wavy hair, athletic build, wants women to see his inner serpent, had reconstructive surgery
Bryce Lang: CIA agent, brown hair, brown eyes, medium build, medium height
Fairly well rounded characters, with each of the good guys almost a clone of the others except for differing quirks and looks. Everyone is adept at weaponry and escaping danger and planning infiltrations. Not too much emotion. Rickard is a crazy killer other killers avoid.
Nothing exciting. What needs to be said gets said. No long discussions, no lengthy soliloquies. Rickard’s voice comes through the best because he’s the craziest.
Relatively short chapters. The POV flips between first person (Joe) and third person (Luke). A few bits of profanity. The violence is not too graphically depicted but the body count rivals any Schwarzenegger movie. It’s a fast read and never does it drag. I would have liked to have delved into the characters a bit more, but, really, this isn’t that type of book. It’s about blood and bullets and action. If you want heartfelt conversations and gushing emotion, read something else.