CLAWBACK by Mike Cooper


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Silas Cade can field strip a Browning .50-caliber machine gun, and he can parachute from an airplane, but he’s done with Iraq and military life and has no interest in hired-gun Blackwater. Instead, Cade reconnoiters Wall Street and uses covert tactics to recover missing millions.

In Cooper’s debut thriller, ex-special ops Cade has earned his CPA, decided not to bean-count and decided to apply his skill set to become a one-man lost-funds recovery operation. The story begins with a hiccup in Cade’s business. Client Thomas Marlett is killed by a sniper, a murder happening at the same time Cade “claws back” Marlett’s $10 million from an about-to-be-arrested fraud. In the Wall Street milieu where traders “have long ago left behind law, morality and the social compact,” Cade doesn’t lack clients. His next, Quint Ganderson, investment-fund managing partner, informs Cade that Marlett’s fund was down 78 percent and two other CEOs of poorly performing funds are also recently dead. As Cade searches for the assassin, Clara Dawson inserts herself into his investigation. She’s a financial blogger-journalist whose legwork has uncovered the fact Cade’s no boring bookkeeper. By mid-tale, Cade’s gone hand-to-hand more than once, dodged a shoot-out and arm-wrestled a helicopter before jumping into the Hudson River to save himself. Cooper’s characters will probably populate sequels, not only Cade and Clara, but also Johnny, boyhood friend and high-velocity trader; Zeke, a hard-drinking, laconic former special-ops buddy; and Rondo, Clara's roommate and a gay martial arts expert. There’s much snappy, half-cynical repartee reminiscent of 1930s Hollywood cinema, including snarks about the necessity of gun control, and a firefight aboard a mega-yacht followed by a jet ski-Zodiac water pursuit. Cooper sets the action in New York City, a locale he has down pat, from neighborhood diners to the only place it’s legal to live on your boat.     

Arm a Hollywood hero with a Beretta and disposable cell, point him at a Gordon Gekko–type, and this book’s big screen ready.



Pub Date: March 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-670-02329-5
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2012


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