Jim Bishop is a hard man, as cold as the wind off the water and tough to the point of brutality.
Scott Weiss is Bishop’s boss, a world-weary ex-cop who runs a private detective agency out of a concrete tower in the heart of San Francisco. In this powerfully original series debut by award-winning and bestselling author Andrew Klavan, Weiss sends Bishop to investigate corruption at a Northern California airport-and so sets events in motion that will lead both men on a desperate hunt for a master assassin.
Bishop’s assignment is to investigate the airport and report back to Weiss. But Bishop prefers to make up the rules as he goes along. He’s willing to beat any man into the ground and draw any woman into his bed in order to get the answers he’s after. A pilot himself, he takes to the air to check out the illegal flights of a thug names Chris Wannamaker. Then he coolly seduces Wannamaker’s lonely wife in order to find out more.
Back in the city, as Weiss struggles to rein Bishop in, he begins a connected investigation of his own. A death in a mansion in Presidio Heights, a seemingly random murder South of Market, an apparent suicide off the Golden Gate Bridge, all seem to bear the mark of Weiss’ old nemesis, an expert gun-for-hire who goes by the name of the Shadowman. It’s a trail of blood, and each step of it seems to bring Weiss closer to Julie Wyant, a mysterious beauty who captures the imagination of every man she meets.
Soon Bishop has found his way into the center of a massive criminal conspiracy, a plan set to climax with an act of audacious violence and a murder that would be impossible for any killer but one. And with his operative’s wife in danger, Weiss begins a race against time to outsmart the murderer who stalks his nightmares and to rescue the woman who haunts his dream.
If you like your tough guys really tough, your femme fatale and your action explosive-welcome to Dynamite Road.
Get the Book
That's how I describe Klavan's characters. The writing is lean and moves along at a good pace. A no point did I skip any of the dialog or pages as I normally do when a story gets bogged down. This didn't happen. The dialog works well and is believable. Klavan does an excellent job of reading his own work and definitely adds the emotion and delivery the way he wants his characters to sound.
I read Klavan's "Empire of Lies," really enjoyed it and thought I'd try something else by him. This book is just as good, but without the author's politics inserted into the story. You'd think that this book might be a little less charged than "Empire of Lies" for that reason, but it makes up in grittiness what it lacks in political observation. This is hardcore men's fiction with a lot of violence, a little gruesomeness, and ultra-tough (but romantic-at-heart) male characters.
The Weiss Agency has been commissioned to investigate corruption at a Northern California airport. Ex-cop P.I. Scott Weiss sends tough-as-nails operative Jim Bishop on assignment to infiltrate and uncover illegal activities. Weiss begins a few investigations of his own, one of which ties a dangerous assassin to the case Bishop is working. Weiss attempts to reel Bishop in, but Bishop forges ahead according to his own rules which lands him on a clandestine rendezvous in the middle of nowhere. He soon finds that his cover is compromised with no way of communicating a warning about what he discovered. In a race against time, Weiss must use his instincts and Bishop his hard edge to take down a criminal conspiracy. The characters are tough, passionate, and humanly flawed. The plot is wound tight with enough cliff-hangers to keep you teetering on the edge. Guaranteed to keep you turning the page--hard-boiled detective fiction at its finest!
This is the first novel I've read by Andrew and I have read 130 thrillers in the past year. 10 occupy my "hall of fame" shelf. Dynamite Road makes it 11. In the context of a tough guy mystery, Klavan spins out original gut punching turns of phrase in which I delight. My copy bleeds with yellow highlighter. Ignore, the name Shadowman and read the book for its brilliant simplicity. 5 people found this helpful