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KILLER INSTINCT by Joseph Finder


by Joseph Finder

Pub Date: May 16th, 2006
ISBN: 0-312-34747-2
Publisher: St. Martin's

The corporate jungle continues to be more perilous than the Evil Empire ever was in this latest suit-eat-suit thriller from former spymaster Finder (Company Man, 2005, etc.).

Everything would have been fine if Jason Steadman hadn’t driven his Acura off the road while he was on the cell phone with wife Kate, and if Kate hadn’t been so anxious for him to get ahead at Entronics, where as district sales manager he sells plasma TVs. Thanks to Kate’s urging, he applies for a promotion to a management position. And thanks to his new acquaintance, tow-truck-driver Kurt Semko, he has the secret weapon to make his rise unstoppable. At first Jason thinks he’s just putting a ringer on the Entronics softball team (Kurt is one mean pitcher who nearly turned pro). Then he thinks he’s just doing Kurt a favor when he urges the Entronics security chief to hire him despite his dishonorable discharge from Special Forces. Then he thinks he’s just a lucky guy as his career takes off like a rocket. Jason’s competitors for the management job miss crucial sales appointments. Their computers go down at the worst possible moments. Important prospects who’ve refused Jason’s sales pitches are suddenly queuing up to sign on the dotted line. His success is crowned by new cars, a better address, even a fancy pram for the baby he and Kate thought they’d never have. Even at birth, that baby could probably tell where this is all heading, especially with the help of Finder’s subtle signposts (old buddy to Jason: “You’ve gone over to the dark side”; sadder but wiser Jason to Kurt: “Just one more time”).

Wait for the inevitable movie, which will at least boil Finder’s predictable thrills down to two hours.