Jon Land (The Seven Sins) introduces a tough original heroine, Caitlin Strong, a fifth-generation Texas Ranger, in the first of what hopefully will be a long crime series. Hyperpatriot Harmon Delladonne runs MacArthur-Rain, a corporation with tentacles in all areas of the U.S. government’s security apparatus. Delladonne’s project Fire Arrow threatens both the privacy of all Americans and their very lives. Strong, the only gun-totin’ female in the legendary Texas Rangers, stumbles onto this plot when she finds her supposedly dead husband, Peter Goodwin, in an institution devoted to treating torture victims. She teams with a dangerous former foe, Cort Wesley Masters, to fight not only Delladonne but Emiliato Valdez Garza, the phantomlike head of the Mexican mafia, and the giant Guillermo Paz, a Delladonne henchman who ponders Kierkegaard while slaying his many enemies. The revelations are constant, the characters compelling and the action fast and furious.
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(Publisher’s Weekly, Mar. 2)
Jeffery Deaver’s “The Weapon,” about the limitations of torture, and Ridley Pearson’s “Boldt’s Broken Angel,” which features a race to prevent a cop’s death, provide solid bookends to this nifty all-original anthology, the sequel to 2006’s Thriller: Stories to Keep You Up All Night. The 23 selections—all by members of International Thriller Writers Inc.—score hits more often than misses. One of the few non-Americans, Spaniard Javier Sierra, might claim the blue ribbon with his tale of impending apocalypse, “The Fifth World.” Lisa Jackson’s “Vintage Death” keeps the reader guessing and on tenterhooks from start to finish. Marcus Sakey’s “The Desert Here and the Desert Far Away” tests the strength of the bonds forged in the current Iraq War when comrades return home. Other contributors include Robert Ferrigno, David Hewson, Jon Land, Carla Neggers and R.L. Stine. In addition to a brief general introduction, Cussler supplies intros to the individual stories. (June 2009)
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(Publisher’s Weekly, Mar. 23)