FBI Agent A.X.L. Pendergast is back in action; his classic ultra expensive black suit, austere expression, white skin and lighter than light hair, expensive taste, and genteel manners; do not mistake him for a sissy, to do so would be a mistake of enormous portions.
If you have never read the Pendergast series of books you have missed an extreme treat. This book is a stand-alone read, however you will receive more enjoyment by starting at the beginning of the series.
Preston and Child crafted a seasoned agent with instincts and brain that are superior to the normal human and place him in situations to use his skills. I would compare him to Colombo, of the 1970’s television show, times 10 without the awkwardness and un-sophistication. Pendergast like Colombo’s brain operates differently than the rest of the world.
Pendergast takes a wine theft case in the small Massachusetts town of Exmouth when he discovers the owner Percival Lake, also a semi-famous sculptor, has a case of a wine thought extinct. All is not what it seems as Pendergast, along with his protegé Constance Green, begins his investigation in his own unique style. A hidden room, chains, an old human bone, ah murder is afoot.
A historian murdered in the marshes and he is not the last murdered there, what was the historian hoping to find, a ship is lost in 1884 off Exmouth, what is Percival Lake’s part in all this, and witches reportedly left Salem for Exmouth during the Salem Witch Trials; lots of twists and turns for Lincoln and Child to bring together.
Characters, Plotting, And Development:
I have never been disappointed in Child and Preston’s Pendergast series and this book is no exception. We have come to expect the unexpected from Child and Preston books as Pendergast investigates monsters, monsters of the worst kind and you can be assured that monsters are residing in the small town of Exmouth, Massachusetts.
Get ready for a thrill ride, as Preston and Child never fail to meet expectations. The action never lets up as the twists and turns of the investigation are meshed to create a cohesive tale of evil, extreme evil. As usual the ending is explosive, and leaves us knowing another tale will be in works.
The pacing and development was the expected excellent form we have come to know from Child and Preston.