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I was not a huge fan of author Gregg Hurwitz until he released Orphan X two years ago. Evan Smoak is one of the most compelling new protagonist to be introduced in the suspense thriller genre during recent years. The second book titled The Nowhere Man arrived a year ago. I wrote a 3 star review of The Nowhere Man which is wrong and which I regret (and which I wish I could rewrite). Hellbent, the just released third novel in the Evan Smoak series released today, is outstanding in every way. Scott Brick's narration is pitch perfect.
30 of 32 people found this review helpful
Evan Smoak's commandment to “Never make it personal” literally goes out the window with the death of his mentor, Jack. But bloodlust gets stalled as he is forced to take on a rescue mission – Jack’s last assignment to him. Now he has a new dilemma – how to mix revenge and rescue without blowing either or both missions. The young girl, Joey, that he is now stuck with, forces him to face what he used to be before the Orphan program made him into who he is now, and this stirs conflicting feelings that he would rather not face. They are a distraction to his revenge obsession. But Joey’s distractions provide the heart and humor to the story, and even inspire Evan to start making some new commandments of his own – “Don’t fall in love with plan A”.
There are some minor nits to pick – the constant vodka and fire arms tutorials get a little old, and the sub plot with his neighbor, Mia, was an unnecessary sideline in this outing. But setting those aside, I still enjoyed the inventiveness of Evan’s schemes to vanquish the bad guys, and the continued character growth. A strong willingness to suspend disbelief is needed for this series, but if you are willing and able to just go for the ride, then Evan will take you on one wild roller-coaster, tugging on your heartstrings at the same time.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful