Author: Andrew Grant
Length: 291 pages
Where Bethany’s Copy Came From: The Indianapolis Public Library
Plot Basics: Royal Navy Intelligence officer David Trevellyan is called to Chicago after his adventures in New York City before he gets to go home to London. There, he’s assigned a “hard arrest” of a fellow officer gone rogue before a terrorist plot can be unleashed on the Windy City. Of course, Trevellyan sees that all the pieces may not add up as he first thought…
Banter Points: I often approach second books with a lowered set of expectations because sequels so often just don’t quite stand up as well as the first one. Happy my surprise when I liked “Die Twice” more than “Even.”
This one excels because the cast of characters is so compact. Often in spy novels, there are lots of tangential players, bosses of bosses in offices removed from the agent on the street and it’s easy to get lost with who’s pulling whose strings and which alphabet-soup agency they are part of. In “Die Twice” there were about five characters with names and a set of unnamed bad guys. I never lost track of who was who and because each character was so well done, my suspicions were aroused about everyone’s honesty at the same time David’s were.
Also… the book jacket says Andrew Grant is a “former telecommunications executive.” In book one, Trevellyan explains he often works under the cover of “telecommunications” when he’s really on a mission. Anybody else wondering what I’m wondering?
Bummer Points: Every chapter starts with Trevellyan reflecting on an aspect of intelligence training or his childhood or family that ties in with the objective of the rest of that chapter. It’s a clever way to get relevant back story and/or reflection into a story that’s primarily action driven. That said, when the action’s going on or a great set-up for the next big scene happened at the end of a chapter, sometimes those anecdotal reflections yanked me out of the narrative.
Word Nerd Recommendation: This is a new “pusher” book for fellow readers who I know like action books. I emailed the CFO at my former job right after I finished this one to tell him about the series. So, this is your encounter with me, pushing this series.