4 out of 4 stars
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Pursuit by John McAllister is 362 pages of a thriller with plenty of murder, mystery, and action. From the first sentence, “Killing RM seemed like a good idea.” you can tell that this story is going to be action-packed. The major theme of the story consists of the police and several groups of criminals trying to find a former government official who has disappeared. Some want to kill him and some want information from him. For much of the story, the man that they are looking for is totally unaware that anyone is looking for him. He is just trying to recover from a break down that he experienced. This story is overlaid with rivalries and power moves among the various members of the different criminal groups.
It is interesting to watch the similarities and differences in the methods used by the police and the criminals. They both use information gathered from the phone company. The police have to go through legal records requests and wiretaps. The criminals gather information through pressure on key employees. The police and the criminals both ask people questions. The police can threaten court, fines, and jail time. The criminals threaten physical and financial pain.
The main character in the story is Doc. On the surface, he appears to be a typical gun for hire. But, as the story progresses you find out there are many layers to this man. The author does an excellent job of developing Doc’s character throughout the story. The author also develops many of the lesser characters to a level needed to make a good story.
The action takes place in England and Ireland. Although some of the terms and expressions used are different from those that would be used elsewhere, they are understandable enough to not be a major distraction from the story. It is not like some books where the local slang is so prevalent that it is hard to understand the meaning of what is being said.
I really liked the way the author revealed the depth of Doc’s character. The fact that he had principles even though he was thought of by most as muscle and a gun. Also the fact that he had an intellectual life that even his closest allies did not know about. I did not like the fact that at times it was hard to follow who was doing certain actions. However, it turned out to be intentional misdirection.
If you enjoy action, suspense, intrigue, mystery, and general thriller novels you will want to add this one to your reading list. It is a good book and can have a wide audience. Violence and murder are part of the storyline. These scenes are not overly graphic but I would not recommend this book for young teenagers and children. There are also a few sexual situations, but again, they are not graphic in their descriptions. I would not recommend this to the truly pure of heart.
I caught a few editorial errors but not nearly enough to detract from the enjoyment of the book. Certainly, there were not enough errors to decrease my rating of this book. I would defiantly give it a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. The book was enjoyable and complex enough to keep you guessing what would happen next. I am looking forward to reading more about Doc and his coworkers.
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