Source: Review copy
Publication: 10 November 2022 from Simon and Schuster
THE CITY OF ANGELS
Adele Schumacher isn’t a typical worried mum. When she hires Elvis to find her missing son, a controversial podcaster named Josh Shoe, she brings a bag filled with cash, paranoid tales of government conspiracies, and a squad of mysterious bodyguards. Finding Josh should be simple, but Elvis quickly learns he isn’t alone in the hunt – a team of deadly strangers are determined to find Josh first.
THE CITY OF LIES
With dangerous secrets lurking behind every lead, Elvis needs his friend Joe Pike more than ever to uncover the truth about Josh, corrupt politicians, and the murderous business cartels rotting the heart of Los Angeles. And when his estranged ex-girlfriend Lucy Chenier and her son return to the city, Elvis realizes just how much he has to lose . . . if he survives.
I am delighted to welcome back guest reviewer, Grace Mitchell to Live and Deadly once again. Grace writes:
I’ve been a big fan of Robert Crais from his very early books and have loved all of his Elvis Cole/Joe Pike novels. I have to say they are very similar to Harlan Coben’s Myron Bolitar and Win books but I personally don’t think that’s a bad thing, if you like one series, you’ll like the other.
The series is now on its 19th outing but still feels like it’s a new angle every time. Cole’s personal life starts to look up, as old flame Lucy and her son Ben come to visit, meanwhile a rather eccentric elderly woman with an interesting past asks Cole to find her son, who has gone missing after striking up a friendship with a young porn star; well, this is LA!
It’s clear there’s more to the dysfunctional parents than meets the eye, not least because as retired academic professors, they appear to have a pretty substantial security detail. The son was a conspiracy theory podcaster who has started to go more mainstream but with an investigative gene that was bound to get him into trouble.
The baddies are not disguised in this story which is a city council corruption scandal, involving money and prostitution, corruption and intimidation. Of course it centres around the hallowed ground of real estate, with every square inch in LA fought over, literally to the death.
A black ops specialist, rogue Chinese black ops agents and an intelligence background don’t obscure the basic of a straightforward money motivated murder spree.
Verdict: Crais maintains a high standard and remains a solidly good, enjoyable read. Cole is an attractive flawed hero and Pike is that chap you wish you had in your life to ensure you are safe from bad guys.
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Robert Crais is the author of the bestselling Cole & Pike novels. A native of Louisiana, Crais moved to Hollywood in the late 70s where he began a successful career in television, writing scripts for such major series as Cagney & Lacey, Miami Vice and Hill Street Blues. In the mid 80s, following his success with the TV buddy genre, Crais created a series of crime novels based around the characters Cole & Pike. In addition, Crais has also written several bestselling standalone thrillers. Robert Crais lives in LA with his wife and family.