Source: Review copy
Publication: 25 November 2021 from MacMillan
My thanks to the publisher for an advance copy for review
THE HUNT IS FINALLY OVER.
FBI agent Atlee Pine is at the end of her long journey to discover what happened to her twin sister, Mercy, who was abducted when the girls were just six years old – an incident which destroyed her family and left Atlee physically and mentally scarred.
She knew her sister and parents were out there somewhere. And she had to find them. Dead or alive. Atlee and her assistant, Carol Blum, discover the truth. But the truth hurts. And hurt makes you tough. So how tough do you have to be to forgive?
As they uncover a shocking trail of lies, greed, fear and revenge, they must face one final challenge. A challenge more deadly and dangerous than they could ever have imagined.
And so we come to the end of the Atlee and Mercy Pine saga – at least for the moment. Reflecting on this series, which I have enjoyed immensely, I realise that it is the women – four of them, who have been pretty much front and centre of this series.
Initially driven by FBI Agent Atlee Pine and her assistant, Carol Blum, the final book expands into telling the story of Ellie Cain, although another woman also takes on a prominent role. That’s pretty excellent as I love reading about hard-core women who can be both protagonist and antagonist.
Mercy is the book where FBI Agent Atlee Pine finally gets enough intelligence to track down her twin sister Mercy, abducted when they were six. In this thrilling and entertaining read, we understand how much damage has been done to these twin sisters – so much so that the real question has to be if there is any way back for Mercy?
The bad guy this time is rather different and I liked that. A man who has learned to clothe himself in a veneer of wealth and sophistication; making his abhorrent behaviour all more surprising and repellent.
Baldacci has given us a fast paced and exciting all-action thriller. It’s often brutal and deals with psychological as well as physical damage. Some scars never heal. Parts were predictable and I felt there was a rush to conclusion which did not serve the book as well as it might, but I loved the interplay between all of the women and especially the way that Carol Blum, older, not usually in the field, manages to play a pivotal role and go on the road with Attlee while she is on leave, on a mission that risks life and limb, all the while still referring to her as Agent Pine and never by her first name!
There’s a lot of serious action, described in excellent detail with guns blazing and much damage inflicted and an ending that shows you that believing in fairy tales is probably still OK.
Verdict: I have enjoyed this series and I can see that there may yet be more potential, but for the time being I’m pretty content to leave things as they are.
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David Baldacci is one of the world’s bestselling and favourite thriller writers. With over 130 million copies in print, his books are published in over eighty territories and forty-five languages, and have been adapted for both feature-film and television. David is also the co-founder, along with his wife, of the Wish You Well Foundation®, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts across the US.