Corporate intrigue and blue-collar ingenuity come together in a complex international mystery.
Danny Miller will be the first to tell you that he’s a loser. He’s lost more burger-flipping jobs than he can count, he still lives with his aging, divorced father, and he hasn’t had a steady romantic relationship in a dog’s age. John Mercer, on the other hand, is a rising star in the banking world—or would be, if only he could convince the company’s board to adopt his view on the world’s financial future. Despite their very different circumstances, these two find themselves caught up in a hostage situation in which appearances—and accents—can be deceiving. Complicating Danny’s and John’s lives are the whims of two beautiful women, both of whom come to play key roles in the intricate plot. Leaving the initial high-tension scene unresolved, the novel picks up each character’s narrative thread in alternating chapters, slowly interweaving them. Easteridge’s knowledge of the ins and outs of stock trading is extensive and his ability to describe the female form adept, but unfortunately, the mystery is saddled with irrelevant detail and bewildering lingo. Instead of clarifying the elaborate plot, long stretches of dialogue and exposition flummox the reader. The action scenes, however, work. They may not be particularly original (a car crash, the outwitting of a terrorist), but they’re told with an efficiency absent elsewhere in the novel. The drawn-out conclusion, which ties up most loose ends too neatly, seems unnecessary and indulgent. Easteridge’s characters, on the other hand, are sympathetically drawn, compelling the reader to keep the pages turning.
Though its knotty plot may baffle some readers, the novel’s well-illustrated moments of excitement hold interest.