The blistering new novel from the author of the multi-award-nominated The Professionals - "Laukkanen is one of the best young thriller writers working today" (Richmond Times-Dispatch).
When you've got nothing left, you've got nothing left to lose. Cass County, Minnesota: A sheriff's deputy steps out of a diner on a rainy summer evening, and a few minutes later, he's lying dead in the mud. When BCA agent Kirk Stevens arrives on the scene, he discovers local authorities have taken into custody a single suspect: a hysterical young woman found sitting by the body, holding the deputy's own gun. She has no ID, speaks no English. A mystery woman. The mystery only deepens from there, as Stevens and Carla Windermere, his partner in the new joint BCA-FBI violent crime task force, find themselves on the trail of a massive international kidnapping and prostitution operation. Before the two agents are done, they will have traveled over half the country, from Montana to New York, and come face-to-face not only with the most vicious man either of them has ever encountered - but two of the most courageous women. They are sisters, stolen ones. But just because you're a victim doesn't mean you have to stay one.
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Excellent! Owen Continues to Impress
- Courtney Harrington
Laukkenan is getting better and better...
Absolutely. This is truly a thriller, The third in the series, featuring the team of Kirk Stevens and Carla Windemere. This time they get involved in the horrific crime of human trafficking. Women from Eastern Europe are dazzled by lies about America, and then they are stuffed into the huge containers that are the freight of international ocean liners. There is one bucket for a container full of women, who are now being kidnapped, as the ship travels over the Atlantic with 95% of their cargo legitimate, and one container that is full of frightened women, living in darkness, and headed for a horrendous fate in the United States. This is great material, and the characters are fully human.
Yes. I've already given a brief synopsis of the plot, but listening to ten or more hours of the good guys chasing the bad guys is pure thrill, and listening to it being read by Edoardo Ballerini is a pleasure almost unmatched in audiobooks. The domestic lives of Stevens and Windermere are believable and completely un-contrived (if that is a word). The bad guys are disgusting vermin whom you just love to hate. It works.
There are many fine scenes. The goriest, if that is what rings your bell, is the scene in which the bad guys are being chased all around Newark Airport, in their car. You have to listen to it to believe it, but you will.
I didn't have an extreme reaction. There wasn't any crying, but there probably was some snickering at Windermere's whip-like personality. She cuts down men ruthlessly, demonstrating how wicked a woman has to act in order to get respect in the world of law enforcement, particularly at the level of the FBI.
This series is fun, and it shows great promise. Laukkenan is very inventive, and there is nothing far-fetched or phony about his fertile imagination. I can sense that he is plotting out several of the books which are to come, and I, personally, can't wait. What a gas.
- Richard Delman