by Matthew Quirk
He’s a former con man trying to live a respectable life. He’s worked hard to get through Harvard and to pay his mom’s medical bills. After being hired by a powerful consulting firm, the Davies Group, Mike Ford looks forward to the good life full of perks he never imagined. However, within a year he finds himself falling back into habits from his past, and learning new ones. His assignments for the Davies Group have him barely escaping the authorities. Henry Davies, founder of the company wants to control the 500 most influential people in Washington, D.C. However, one man won’t buckle under. Ford, against everyone’s advice, digs into the practices of the Davies Group in order to save his own life and maybe the life of several others.
Mike Ford: 29, degree from Harvard law and Kennedy School, mother dead, father in prison, former con artist, lock picker, former Navy man, has an older brother
Henry Davies: CEO of the Davies Group, a high priced consulting Washington D.C. firm moving the movers and shakers of Washington, former government man in several administrations, soft spoken but with a powerful influence, own estates in Chevy Chase, Tuscany, and California, wears glasses, guest lectures at Harvard
William Marcus: a top man at the Davies Group and Ford’s supervisor, late 40s, physically fit, background a mystery, reddish brown short hair, occasional smoker
Annie Clark: Senior Associate at Davies Group, black curly hair, blue eyes, speaks several languages, attended Yale
Very good character profiles. Everybody is included, from the high powered baddie in Davies to his lieutenant to the skuzzy Representative to the Supreme Court judge to the dirty foreigner. A nice cast showing the slightly dirty to the extremely corrupted individual.
Short conversations. More narrative than anything. Fairly defined voices.
First person from Ford’s POV. Occasional profanity. There are several instances where Quirk interrupts the current scene to explain something from the past. These threw me for a bit because I kept drifting back a few pages to remember exactly where and why he had started this backtracking. Tense action scenes with adeptness know-how from a character with a criminal background. Just enough details and descriptions to bring you into the scene without over doing it. Good knowledge of the ways Washington works.