Sunday, October 21, 2007

Stone Cold-David Baldacci

Stone Cold
David Baldacci
Grand Central, Nov 2007, $26.99
ISBN: 9780446577397

With their recent escapades (see THE COLLECTORS and THE CAMEL CLUB), the DC based Camel Club members have gained some powerful friends who support the revealing of government official wrong doing and avarice; but also some equally powerful adversaries who prefer secrets remain that way. However, the club’s associates are like the Three Musketeers when it comes to protecting one another. When honorary assistant Annabelle Conroy get in trouble after conning about forty million dollars from Atlantic City casino king Jerry Bagger (started in THE COLLECTORS), the Camel Club protects her from him; he plans to do to her what he did to her mother, kill her.

However, Camel Club leader Oliver Stone has a new greater threat to contend with. Homeland Security Agent Harry Finn, a loving father and spouse and highly regarded patriot, is methodically killing the survivors of a CIA Cold War cell Triple 6 out of retaliation for arranging the death of his father, an alleged traitor Raymond Solomon. Oliver when he was the late John Carr was part of that unit. The other club members (Reuben Rhodes, Caleb Shaw, Milton Farb and honorary member Secret service Agent Alex Ford) are divided over whom they need to protect as both threats are deadly serious.

The speed of this thriller is incredible as both subplots move out at an extraordinary pace yet the key players seem fully developed and plausible especially Harry and the Camel Club members. Both Oliver and Annabelle recognize the problems they respectively face as each knows they are in trouble, but in some ways welcome the confrontation. Underlying this strong thriller is a caution that government secrets are rarely security issues, but more likely the hiding of embarrassments usually caused by a lack of adequate checks and balances on arrogant imperial power.

Harriet Klausner

1 comment:

. said...

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