Authors: Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
American release date: February 11, 2011
Format/ Genre/Length: Novel/Thriller/342 pages
Publisher/Industry Age Rating: NR
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★
Similar series or titles to check out: the Pendergast series, by the same authors
Gideon Crew watched his father get shot down by his government employers, accused of treason. Gideon was only twelve when his world was turned upside down, an event from which his mother never recovered. It sent her into a downward spiral which continued until her own death. Gideon vowed to wreak vengeance on the ones who’d destroyed his family.
L. Melvin Crew was a world-class mathematician who’d worked for a government agency. He was accused of causing the deaths of 26 field agents, and was summarily executed during a hostage situation, right before his son’s eyes, although he had clearly surrendered and was unarmed. Gideon refuses to believe he was guilty. He distances himself from things, following a rather illegal career path. It isn’t until some twelve years later, at the request of his dying mother, that he goes after the man responsible for his father’s death, amassing the evidence he needs to clear his father. And the name of the man that was responsible for his death—retired General Chamblee Tucker.
After clearing his father’s name, Gideon thinks he’s going to spend a little time at his remote cabin, relaxing and fishing. But Fate has other ideas. A strange man turns up unexpectedly, with a very lucrative offer. One which Gideon cannot refuse. He decides to at least listen, and finds himself on a flight to NYC. There he meets the extraordinary engineer Eli Glinn, owner and chief CEO of EES—Effective Engineering Solutions, Inc.
How to explain Eli Glinn and EES? They specialize in the discipline of failure analysis, among other things. They take on difficult, unusual, and critical tasks that no one else can handle. And they do it discreetly. Eli has a job for Gideon, one he believes the other man to be perfect for. He knows all about his doings with Chamblee Tucker. As well as Gideon’s stint as a major art thief. Gideon doesn’t really have a lot of choice here, so he agrees. Especially when information of a rather personal nature is revealed, and Gideon assumes a what the hell attitude.
First things first. A Chinese scientist is on his way to the US; he carries plans for a new high-technology weapon. It is believed this weapon is more powerful than the H-bomb. Gideon’s mission is to tail him from the airport, upon his arrival, and take the plans away from him and then bring them to Glinn. The fee is $100k. He has four hours until Mark Wu’s arrival. Four hours in which to figure out how he’s gonna do it.
From the very beginning, things do not go as planned. Gideon Crew is in for the ride of his life.
I am a huge fan of Preston & Child, so it was inconceivable that I would not read this book and review it. I loved it from the beginning. I found myself caught up in Gideon’s dilemma, in the tragedy of his childhood which formed his life and his personality, made him what he is. Gideon himself is a likeable character, and you come to care for him, and cheer him on to ultimate success. The secondary characters are every bit as believable, and well-drawn. P&C suck you into this fast-paced world of high stakes technology. Luckily our guide knows what he’s doing.
I found one small continuity error which an editor should have caught, but oh well. If you read the jacket, it states that Gideon’s father died when he was 12. At 24 Gideon begins his mission of vengeance. The book begins in 1988, therefore twelve years later should be 2000. But the book says 1996. Small error, but I’m anal enough to pick up on it.
I loved the cliffhanger ending, and I am hoping there will be more of Gideon Crew. No, don’t worry, they finished the first story, just dangled a second one like a carrot in front of Gideon’s face. I think he has little choice but to take it. I’ll definitely be there to see what he does with it.