Oct 28, 2015
In a phrase: This book did not speak to me. After reading 5 or 6 other Robert Crais novels (all with Elvis Cole and/or Joe Pike), I was excited to see this author write a book without these two great protagonists.
Just as Max Holman is released from a 10-year stint in federal prison for bank robbery, he is told that his only offspring was killed the night before. Having rejected his father's life-long pursuit of the 'quick and shady deal,' Max's son Richard became an LA police officer. He and three other officers were killed without getting off a shot.
I really empathized with Max; he had decided to turn his life around and seek out a relationship with his son. Max was devastated by his son's death. Max wants to know who killed his son and (when facts come to light that Richard might have been a dirty cop), Max wants to know the truth.
Because Max quickly wears out his welcome with the LAPD, he needs someone to help him get inside the investigation. The only person he can come up with is the former FBI agent Katherine Pollard, who arrested him 10 years before.
This novel was a disappointment; Max working with the person who put him in jail wasn't realistic. Had Katherine still been an agent, this story might have seemed sensible. Also, the idea that an FBI agent (educated, intelligent) would be interested in a career criminal romantically just didn't fly with me.
There were a variety of events in the story that turned the story on its head. But there was just too much that down-on-his-luck Max got into that didn't ring true.
Mar 11, 2010
I have to say that this is possibly my favorite Robert Crais book (even though at first I was disappointed to find that it did not involve Elvis and Joe). Max Holman turned out to be such a sympathetic character, that I could barely wait to find out if he would succeed at turning his life around, after wasting his young years as a "wild child". The loss of his son just as Max is being released from prison, hoping to start some kind of relationship with the young man, is immensely poignant. It almost seems that it would be impossible for him to turn his back on the too-easy slide back into drugs, drink and criminal behavior. How he solves his son's murder, and the clever way he arranges for the unveiling of the unsuspected evil-doer, makes for a gripping read. Oh, and the growing affection between him and former FBI special agent Katherine Pollard didn't hurt, either. This is a terrific book!