Book Cover

Lucas Davenport goes west.

But first he goes south, called from his home in Minnesota to
the Louisiana swamp where hired killer Clayton Deese buried at least five
people (the total is actually higher) before coming a cropper seven months ago
with his latest target, Howell Paine. Things went sideways, sending Paine to
the hospital and sentencing Deese to an ankle monitor he sliced through three
days ago. Local FBI agent Sandro Tremanty, discovering Deese’s absence, wants
help from the U.S. marshals in rounding up his quarry so that he can implicate
loan shark Roger Smith, who’d hired him to hurt Paine and send a warning to his
other debtors. And there’s another reason the feds would like to get Deese off
the streets: His experiments in homicide have given him a taste for human
flesh. Soon enough, Lucas, together with marshals Rae Givens and Bob Matees, has
picked up Deese’s trail, which leads first to Marina Del Rey, where he’s joined
his half brother, Marion Beauchamps, and Jayden Nast, “a guy with guns, who
hates cops,” in a brutal home-invasion crew. Conscientious detective work
brings Lucas and the LAPD within a whisker of catching Deese, but he slips away
from them and heads to Las Vegas with Genesis Cox, the blonde he’s picked up,
and John Rogers Cole, another accomplice. Deese and his cohort must constantly
pull new jobs to support their gambling and drug habits, and it’s hard to
imagine their eluding the law for very long. But there are deeper threats to
their racket. Roger Smith, who knows plenty about Deese, realizes he has every
reason to get rid of him, and there turns out to be no honor among the thieves
closer to home either.

Professionally entertaining, with lots of realistically
frustrating false hopes—though it’s hard to worry very much about the leading
question here: Will the franchise hero (Twisted Prey, 2018, etc.) succeed in
bringing the crooks to justice before they wipe each other off the face of the Earth?

kirkusreviews.com

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