on July 17, 2011
This is a real review by a real reader (if you are interested in why I wrote that, see comment at bottom).
While the initial plot developments stretch the imagination, once the book gets going the action is fast and enjoyable. There is a small amount of character development, enough to stop the characters from becoming cartoon characters, and a satisfying ending (requiring of course, a normal suspension of disbelief).
Good beach or travel read. You probably wouldn't remember the book in a few months, but it's priced right and it slides down well.
[It is too bad either the Author felt he had to hype the book with reviews of questionable origins, or that six of his close friends decided to review all of his 4 thrillers books, each one reviewing all 4 of their reviews on one day: bo on 4/28, th on 4/29, lo on 5/3, tb on 5/5, rh on 5/26, So on 6/7.]
on June 28, 2012
I rarely ever stop reading a book until it is completed, but this was the dumbest attempt at a thriller I have read in awhile. The author tries to make Mercury this super Rambo type, yet he makes ignorant rookie mistakes that someone with his background would never make. The thought that the FBI would let a death row inmate go on live tv to make a statement was unbelievable.
If you are used to reading great thrillers like Lee Child, Michael Connelly or Harlan Coban, you will be sorely disappointed in this book! So glad I received it for free!
on July 6, 2012
I downloaded this book when it was free strictly because Santa Cruz is where I was born and raised, so I have fond memories of it. I thought that much more of the story would take place there since it was mentioned so specifically, but that isnt what happened
A man on death row (with three days to his execution) states if he can have 5 minutes of airtime he will reveal the location of the bodies of his victims. When he goes on-air he puts a hit out on his sister in law for 500 million dollars if she is dead before him. So of course a TON of people are after her.
then a shock-jock finds out where she lives and it is broadcast over the airwaves.
Then a photographer follows her after she and ehr 2 kids escape their house and flee, and THAT location is broadcase over the airwaves (all this info is constantly being broadcast over several hours)
So the FBI goes and picks up the dude from Santa Cruz and drops him near where they are hiding.
WTF???!?!?!?! The FBI is unable to hide 3 people for 3 days? And will let a sadistic murderer have 5 minutes of televised airtime live? AND no one could stop the shock-jock??? I understand freedom of the press, but I have trouble believing that would be allowed because it was basically assisting murder.
I got a little less than halfway through and had to stop because it was so incredibly unbelieveable.
Dont waste your time or especially your money
on November 30, 2012
I can't believe this author has six novels and some of them even on print. Maybe this was his first and has improved since. I'm not going to risk buying another one, though.
*** SPOILER ALERT ***
There is absolutely no character development. The few characters the author thought needed a bit of attention are flat and inconsistent and the only description whatsoever is a couple of cliches. You have the radio disc jock that you could say is Howard Stern (down to the choice of t-shirt) if not for the name change . An asian girl killer clad in leather and riding a motorcycle. The tough FBI agent, turn civilian, ala Jack Reaper (but without the pizazz), the corrupt lawyer, the unscrupulous colombian mafioso, the ambitious governor, the sleazy paparazzi. And these are the important ones, then you have a string of names that are thrown in with no purpose nor importance.
The narrative is terrible. At first is half decent but as the story progresses it worsens more and more. This is one of my favorite paragraphs:
"He could wait for #2 to round the bend and go for a head shot with the Beretta, hope for a quick kill and then try his luck with #1.But if he missed, or couldn't manage a fatal shot, he'd really be boxed in. Besides, he'd already given consideration to dealing with #1, and hadn't liked the odds.
No, he needed to take out #2 as silently as possible. Needed to strike quickly and efficiently and exit the canyon. Let #1 keep on walking."
Notice the smart way numbers are used to describe the foes. Poetry in action.
Add to this the myriad of typos and grammatical errors that you find from beginning to end. English is only my second language (and I'm not proficient on it even for a second language) but even I found all the errors distracting. Not that there weren't many other problems to get distracted with.
Now, about the plot. This is where Mr. Casey hits the jackpot. In this you can definitely say he is an original because nothing, absolutely nothing, that happens in this story makes any sense whatsoever. In this aspect he was methodically consistent. First, you have a common crime being investigated by the FBI (a passion crime were a guy kills his daughter, wife and her lover). Why? Who knows. The author doesn't bother to explain why the FBI would be involved in such a thing. Then, the killer, who knows is going to be apprehended and charged, takes the time to stash all his fortune ($500 million) in offshore accounts but doesn't consider fleeing but, now that he is in death row, comes up with the perfect plan to escape:
First, he gets the FBI to allow him to talk on national TV (in exchange for the location of the bodies of his victims that remain unknown) and offers a bounty of 500 million to whoever kills his sister in law. Smart guys those FBI agents. This unleashes a wave of violence because every thug and criminal wants to collect. The bounty is for her head, nor her family, so the first thing she does, very smartly, is grab her kids and flee with them. No sense in letting the father take care of them and keep them from harm's way. Now, the location of the sister in law is being updated constantly on a radio talk show so if you are a killer, and want to know were to go, all you have to do is listen to Mr Howard Stern wannabe. This only applies to the killers, though, because neither the police nor the FBI ever get a hint of this and are always trailing the bad guys (I guess that radio station transmits on a wave length not authorized for official listening). This would also explain why no one can shut down a radio host who is helping and abetting in the commission of a crime.
There is also the paparazzi. This guy has been able to locate the sister in law and, paparazzi that he is, the first thing he does is call the radio station and keep them informed of her every move. After all, that's the motto of every paparazzi, "if you have the opportunity of taking exclusive pictures of someone important, disclose the location, so everybody can also get pictures". Luckily for our friend, it seems other paparazzi are excluded from this radio broadcast (as is the case with the FBI and police)since no other reporter ever shows on the scene. The FBI, humble that they are, recognize at first hand that they are unable to protect the girl and decides the only solution is to call back an ex agent, previously canned from the service, who is guaranteed to be able to do, by himself, what the entire department of the FBI and the police are incapable of doing. Supposedly this whole bounty thing is just a distraction to keep the FBI busy while the killer can escape but at no point during the story there is any involvement from the police or the FBI.
All this I described above happens by chapter ten or so and you can just imagine how bad can it get in the remaining 100 chapters.
There is even a lame attempt to romance thrown in at the end of the story. After all, you can't have the girl not falling in love with the hero.
I could go on and on over the multiple problems this story has but, basically, I would be copying verbatim the entire novel.
My recommendation: if you have the opportunity to read this book, let it pass.
on June 28, 2012
As a disclaimer, I chose this book because it happened to be free on my Kindle this month, and thought I'd give it a try.
For the price I paid, it was certainly worth it. The action (and that's all it primarily consists of) flows smoothly, unencumbered by anything like character development, introspection or depth. This book is for pure adrenaline, and written for those with a remarkable ability to suspend disbelief. Also, being only semi-literate might help, given the amount of typos, awkward sentence structure and overlooked mistakes in editing- not necessarily the author's fault, since he should fire his editor.
The plot centers around a Ms. Lindsay Hammond, targetted by a death-row inmate who puts a bounty on her head to the tune of $500 million while on national television. The caveat? She must be dead within 72 hours- before he dies by lethal injection. Enter Ryan Archer, disgraced FBI agent who is now contracted by them to protect Ms. Hammond (you know, because the FBI has NO assets or manpower to do it themselves). Armed only with a Beretta 9mm and a mean disposition, Archer defends her against the hordes of criminals coming after her. After several dumb mistakes and nearly constant hysteria from the women he was sent to protect, you almost wish he'd turn the Beretta on her... Not that he's that bright himself. My favorite part was when he was stalking 10 ex-marines and taking them out one by one... with that freakin' loud Beretta, all the while giving the serious weaponry he collected from the bodies to other allies. You almost expected some sort of love scene between him and the Beretta at some point.
There are some almost interesting characters in here- but the antagonist is the only one who has a readable agenda and an- almost- completely developed character. The remainder of the characters, Archer and Hammond included, could easily be dumped into any dime-store thriller with no noticeable disruption. He's the typical existential code anti-hero, she the spunky victim with backbone (and shrill voice)- and everyone else is avaricious, 2-dimensional and drawn in cariacture form.
All that being said, it certainly is paced right, however, and is an enjoyable, mindless read for when you want to tune out from the world (perfect for commutes). If your expectations are low, and you can get it at the right price, why not?