Saturday, December 6, 2014

Vanished by Joseph Finder

In the beginning, Lauren and Roger Heller are out for dinner when they are attacked by several men. Lauren wakes up in the hospital and finds out that her husband has vanished. 

This is the first novel in a series by Joseph Finder featuring Nick Heller, a private spy who has experience in the special forces. Lauren will ask Nick to track down her husband. With some clues, Nick will make every effort to find his brother and unravel the mystery of his disappearance. 

The story is more intriguing with Nick’s relationship with his brother and his father, who was arrested for bilking people out of their money. This will lead Nick into a fight with a powerful corporate as well. 

Finder does a good job of creating characters with flaws that make them more memorable, especially with Nick Heller’s relationship with his brother. As the mystery starts to unravel, Nick finds that there is a lot more to his brother’s disappearance and the answers lead to a lot more surprises.

The combination of action and suspense along with the point of views switching to Lauren make for a fast paced read. Finder manages to build other believable characters such as Lauren and Gabe and shows how a dysfunctional relationship builds even more tension in the story. 

Finder’s series seem like an attempt to compete with other action thrillers that include Brad Thor, Vince Flynn, Barry Eisler, and Lee Child. I’m not quite ready to say that Nick is at this level but he’s close enough that I would give it five stars for a action packed story with memorable characters that have their flaws. 

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