Book Review - Jackie K Cooper
NO MAN'S LAND by David Baldacci
David Baldacci is one of America's favorite mystery writers, and he has earned that adulation fair and square. He is constantly turning out one readable and enjoyable adventure after another. His latest novel NO MAN'S LAND is his fourth John Pullen story and it is a good one. It is fast reading from the start as the pages grab the readers' interest and off they go.
It all starts when Army investigator John Pullen learns his father, a retired general who is now suffering from dementia, has been accused of murdering his wife by a neighbor they had many years ago. This lady's letter states the general murdered his wife Jackie and made it look as if she had deserted her family. Jackie did disappear when John was eight years old but he had never thought she deserted them. He just knew her disappearance had never been solved or explained.
Taking leave from the Army, John decides to investigate his mother's disappearance himself. He is soon joined by Veronica Knox, a fellow investigator from another agency. He also calls upon his brother Robert, who is serving in the Air Force, for assistance. Veronica and Robert try to convince John to let the authorities handle it but John feels he owes it to his mother to solve this mystery himself.
Meanwhile a man named Paul Rogers has been released from prison. He is a man who is in his fifties but possesses inordinate strength. He is almost what you would call super human. Upon his release Paul becomes a man with a mission. He is gong to find the person responsible for his condition and rid the world of her. Readers know that at some point in the book these two men's paths are going to cross. The suspense of this upcoming meeting is palpable.
Baldacci creates complex stories but they are never difficult to follow. The movement of the tale just flows across the pages and the reader absorbs it. There is no difficulty in understanding what is happening and no confusion as to why anyone acts in the way he/she does. The characters are so completely drawn you understand what they may do and appreciate it when it occurs.
Baldacci's books, like NO MAN'S LAND, are so enjoyable I could end one and start another with ease. Thank goodness he is prolific because his manner of storytelling is so addictive. Read just one Baldacci and you will see what I mean.
NO MAN'S LAND is published by Grand Central. It contains 432 pages and sells for $29.00.
Jackie K Cooper