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Sunday, December 23, 2018

THE WANTED: AN ELVIS COLE and JOE PIKE NOVEL (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike #17) by Robert Crais



The Elvis Cole novels have been coming out for 30 years and this book would be a fine place for the series to end - not that I want it to end

Originally published in 2017 by G.P. Putnam's Sons

Robert Crais. Photo by Mark Coggins.
The Elvis Cole novels have been coming out for 30 years and this book would be a fine place for the series to end, especially considering the last 20 pages or so. Not that I want it to end - I will read them as long as Robert Crais wants to write them, but this book goes out of its way to include all of the hallmarks of an Elvis Cole novel, almost like it is going down a checklist one last time. Those items include:

1) Joe Pike is there and Joe Pike is scary, full of tech knowledge and lurks in dark places;

2) Elvis' car gets a special mention;
3) Elvis' cat is in several scenes and full of his special "charm";
4) Elvis shows off his culinary skills;
5) Elvis does his martial arts workout;
6) Elvis goes to his office (the early books always featured the office and its special decor);
7) Elvis and Joe reaffirm their bond multiple times;
8) Elvis and...Louisiana (no spoilers).

The book focuses on a case brought to Elvis by a worried mom. Her son is suddenly flush with cash and has a new group of friends that she barely knows but doesn't care for. She asks Elvis to find out what her son is doing. Elvis puts his considerable experience to use and figures it out soon enough. But...what he discovers is not good and he finds out that his client's son is in serious danger. There is a problem though - no can find him and Cole discovers a team of hit men are involved as well.

By far, the most interesting characters in the book are the two hit men (Harvey and Stemms). They function as a mirror image of Pike and Cole - they are just as smart, just as talented and their relationship is just as complicated.

This is a good book, just not a great one. I rate it 4 stars out of 5 and it can be found on Amazon.com here: THE WANTED: AN ELVIS COLE and JOE PIKE NOVEL.


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