MURDERWELL

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by Nelson DeMille & Alex DeMille RELEASE DATE: Oct. 10, 2023

Entertaining and sure to please thriller fans.

Second in the military crime series featuring Special Agents Scott Brodie and Magnolia “Maggie” Taylor, after The Deserter (2019).

In Berlin, U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer Harry Vance slips out of his lover’s bed for a mysterious nighttime meeting. He is an operative in the American Terrorism and Criminal Investigation Unit, or TCIU, and a sniper shoots him dead. Army brass speculates that this is the work of Islamic terrorists, so they bring in Brodie of the Criminal Investigation Division and assign him Taylor as his partner. On foreign soil, “officially and legally” they cannot gather evidence, question witnesses, or make arrests. The two have a one-novel history together, including tension both professional and sexual. “Sex, lies, and betrayal notwithstanding,” though, “they made a pretty good team.” As they search for justice for their fallen colleague, maybe they can figure out why the assassin killed from long range and then apparently walked over and gouged out Vance’s left eye. Maybe evil forces are up to much more than meets the eye, if you’ll pardon the expression. Anyway, the partners complement each other: Taylor is the more rational and level-headed, while Brodie blatantly disregards jurisdictional boundaries when he needs to. He has that nothing-to-lose attitude, given that his career is swirling down the toilet bowl anyway. So if it seems a bit odd that she trusts his judgment, it’s because he’s usually right. Co-authors Nelson DeMille and his son Alex have created interesting characters, though Brodie might be the type that appears more in fiction than in the real world: About to be handcuffed by a pair of armed men, he “suddenly spun around and delivered a ball-busting kick, under the guy’s ballistic vest, and into his non-ballistic balls.” Then he bloodies the other fellow before he can draw his weapon. The partners deliver a few punchlines of their own in this fast-moving story that’s replete with twists and danger. Brodie and Taylor are sympathetic characters who accomplish a lot given their limited authority.

Entertaining and sure to please thriller fans.

Pub Date: Oct. 10, 2023

ISBN: 9781501101816

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2023

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