Sunday, November 6, 2016

A Widow and a Journalist Combine Forces to Chase Down the Secret of a Company Called Bioflux

Kevin Burns is a journalist who has just lost his job with MSNBC for faking a report. He's trying to determine what he should do next when out of the blue, he's contacted by an old high school acquaintance named Carl Greene. The call is something of a surprise because Kevin and Carl were never close and Carl wound up marrying Kevin's old girlfriend, Lucy. 

Carl insists that he has a very important story that Kevin needs to hear. Naturally, since this is a thriller and not real life, Carl refuses to give Kevin even a hint over the phone but insists that they meet at a baseball game in Denver. And, of course, since this is a thriller and not real life, Carl will die in a mysterious car crash before he can meet with Kevin. But the appointment does serve to brink Kevin back to the Denver area where the three grew up.

Shortly after Carl's death, an intruder breaks into his house where Lucy, now his widow, is sleeping. Lucy wakes up and finds the intruder riffling through the files in Carl's study. She chases the intruder off and assumes it was simply a burglar, even though the intruder bypassed several very valuable items on the way to the study.

Of course the reader knows, as Lucy should know, that something much more sinister is going on here. Kevin and Lucy reconnect and the files in Carl's study are removed by a couple of guys from Bioflux, the company he works for. Shortly thereafter, the intruder returns and is extremely upset to discover that the files are gone.

Naturally, very dark and mysterious things are going on here. (How could they not be when you're dealing with a company called Bioflux?) Lucy, Kevin and an associate that I won't name for fear of giving away a plot point, join forces and go on the road in pursuit of whatever the secret was that Carl had uncovered. Very bad people will attempt to prevent them from succeeding in their mission.

I'm a huge fan of Jenny Siler's first two books, Easy Money and Iced, which both have very gritty, realistic plots and feature tough, edgy female protagonists. Shot is not a bad book, but it pales a bit by comparison to Siler's first two novels. It feels a little formulaic; the main protagonist, Lucy, is not nearly as compelling as the ones in the first two books, and the story seems a bit far-fetched. Three stars, if only because my expectations were set so high after the first two books.

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