A military officer is willing to do whatever it takes to get the promotion so far denied him.
Col. Claymore Jefferson Viceroy may be dissatisfied with his lot in life, but his background in black ops and the loyal group of men he’s worked with for years have provided the basis for a convoluted, deadly plan he’s sure will catapult him to military stardom. Pivotal to the plan is Viceroy’s brother-in-law, former vice president William “Big Willie” Bernard, a charming but stupid politician whom Viceroy is aiding in his bid for the presidency. A clever newsman and his beautiful, witless reporter girlfriend working on a story that could tie Bernard to the torture of prisoners at Gitmo present serious obstacles for Viceroy. Ironically, however, a man he saved from torture and death in Somalia may be Viceroy’s biggest problem. Kevin McClain is now a Metro D.C. police detective investigating the mystery of a badly burned body that turns out to be that of a terrorist released from Gitmo. The case will place McClain squarely in Viceroy’s path to glory. Over at the FBI, Special Agent Felicia Knight and her misogynist colleagues are working to foil a group of terrorists bringing Sarin into the country. Little do they know that the plot is really a cover for Viceroy’s plan to use the gas to discredit the current president. With Viceroy willing to kill anyone who stands in his way, only McClain and Knight have any chance of stopping him.
In a switch from his police procedurals (Sacrificial Offerings, 2012, etc.), Black presents a promising but unexceptional thriller that draws on his years of police experience. It’s slow to get going but builds to an exciting climax.