A Book Spy Review: ‘A Dangerous Man’ by Robert Crais

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A DANGEROUS MANNew York Times bestseller Robert Crais turns in a very Lee Child-like story with his latest Joe Pike book, A Dangerous Man, proving yet again that his longrunning series is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

It all started with going to the bank. All Joe Pike intended to do was make a deposit and move on with his life, same as anyone else. Instead, upon returning to his Jeep, Joe sees the friendly bank teller, a woman named Isabel Roland, exit the building—her pink shirt catching his eye—and throw on a pair of shades. Things take a turn, though, when Isabel is approached by a large man and then shortly thereafter leaves in an SUV with him. Her body language, Joe notes, isn’t right, and he realizes she was taken against her will. 

Having witnessed the kidnapping in real-time, Joe springs to action, using his lethal set of skills—all of which have been honed over a lifetime that includes stops in the Marines and the LA police department—to save the woman before things get out of hand.

Sadly, the victory is short-lived, as Isabel is later abducted again, this time before Joe can do anything about it, forcing him to turn to his longtime friend and sometimes co-worker Elvis Cole for help. But as the two begin to investigate, they find themselves left with more questions than answers—and as dead bodies begin to pile up around them, it becomes clear that whatever Joe stepped into that day at the bank is worse than either could have predicted . . . and the only way to put the mess behind them is to shoot their way out once and for all. 

Much like his past books The Watchman and The First Rule, Crais makes Joe Pike the lead here, changing things up a bit in a way that feels both oddly refreshing and pleasantly familiar. Readers still hear from Elvis Cole, as Crais alternates telling the story through his and Pike’s POV, along with a few others (including the bad guys), carefully layering his plot in a way that sucks readers in early and demands their attention throughout. The pacing is steady, opening with a bit of action before pulling back ever so slightly to let the story unfold. Once it does, Crais doesn’t let up, and while readers might have guessed how past books in the series would end before they got there, this one should keep even veteran readers on the edge of the seats until the last page. 

Robert Crais remains one of the most consistent and talented writers in the genre, and A Dangerous Man is one of the top must-read crime thrillers hitting bookstores this summer.

Book Details

Author: Robert Crais
Series: An Elvis Cole and Joe Pike Novel (Book 18)
Pages: 352 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0525535683
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: August 6, 2019
Book Spy Rating: 8.5/10

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Praised as “One of the hardest working, most thoughtful, and fairest reviewers out there” by #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline, Ryan Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). Steck also works full-time as a freelance editor and pens a monthly thriller column for CrimeReads. For more information, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He currently lives in Southwest Michigan with his wife and their six children.

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