A web of deception surrounds the murder of a valuable horse in this international thriller.
Geronimo was Germany’s finest equine, rode and dressed by one of its most famous athletes–so the exquisite animal’s death instantly raised eyebrows. Furthermore, the high-ranking inspector sent from the horse’s insurance house is brutally killed, fed to the lions at the Paris Zoo. The murderers videotape his death and send the footage to his powerful Swiss insurance company, which must weigh the specter of the inspector’s murder with the urge to preserve their balance sheet. Meanwhile Bret Roemer, the charismatic yet disillusioned scion of a powerful American family, is asked to keep watch on his family friend, an equestrian named Claire who’s involved with Geronimo’s training. As the prospect of a widespread conspiracy becomes greater, fear for Claire’s safety has increased, and Bret attempts to protect her, while feeling increasingly attracted to her. Lurking in the background are Geronimo’s owners, an enigmatic and dangerous consortium known only as Kirchborn. These disparate players–along with Swiss bankers concealing Jewish wealth, the International Olympic Committee and Eastern-European organized crime–eventually intersect in interesting ways as the mystery of Geronimo’s death deepens. Tense conversations and bank accounts propel this plot more than gunfights or car chases. Fortunately, Gilmore is a strong writer well-versed in the art of thrillers. But while the prose is fast-paced, the Eurocentric subject matter–the international world of horse training–may not appeal to certain readers, and detailed descriptions of dressage will lose some entirely. Additionally, glimpses into the closed-door boardrooms of Europe’s most powerful corporations do not ring realistic. However, these are easily overlooked issues, given how enjoyable this book can be.
A winning thriller.