torrilynnn's review against another edition
novelesque_life's review against another edition
"On the busiest shopping day of the year, idealistic students wade into malls across America carrying concealed devices they believe will cause chaos at the checkouts. But at the nation's largest shopping center, the results are incendiary - and people lie dead. A white-collar lobby group called Citizens for American Pride takes responsibility for the protest action, calling for an end to cheap, foreign-made goods and exported manufacturing jobs. But they insist the bombing was the work of rogue members, zealots who took the message too far. As Maggie and her partner sift through both the debris and the facts of the case, they uncover paranoia, racism and a sinister secret agenda that extends to the CAPs highest ranks. As retailers count down to Christmas Eve, Maggie knows that infiltration is the only option, even though the cost could be huge. And if they fail, more innocent people will pay with their lives." (From Amazon)
Not bad...but I like Maggie O'Dell's earlier novels a lot better.
nglofile's review against another edition
laurenjodi's review against another edition
Black Friday, the busiest shopping day in America, and three young men are about to wreak havoc by detonating an EMP pulse in the Mall of America. Unbeknownst to them, they are actually pawns in a much larger and deadlier conspiracy that will leave dozens dead and FBI profiler, Maggie O'Dell in a race against time to prevent an even more catastrophic terror attack.
A good premise but the execution is poor and the finale does not deliver.
This is supposed to be a "race against time" scenario but the pace is slow and there is no sense of urgency. The book also finishes with too many loose ends and unanswered questions -
SpoilerAs with "A Perfect Evil", I gather we will be seeing more of the villain of this piece
The writing is choppy with events occurring out of the blue with no exposition or development
Spoileri.e., Dixon and Becca's sudden rescue by SWAT
Once again, there is little to no character growth - the cat and mouse between Maggie and Nick is getting old - too many hurt feelings and lack of trust. It is time to either put up or shut up with this relationship. On the other hand, Maggie's half-brother, Patrick Murphy, is given some much needed page time and the sections about him are enjoyable.
One positive aspect of the plot involves the exploration of the John Doe #2 conspiracy theory following the Oklahoma Bombing - as a non-American, this is my first time hearing about this and it added an interesting element to the terrorist plot.
On a final note, the book references numerous events from previous installments and it might be difficult for first time readers of the series to follow.
Overall, a disappointing addition and I hope that the next one will be better.
snowkab's review against another edition
I read this book in two days (it's not long, and I had free time) and it was a mostly enjoyable read. It's a pretty standard thriller with a pretty standard villain- at no point did the villain surprise me. In fact, I'm not certain any plot twist caught me by surprise. Except maybe one towards the very end? Uber spoilers for the ending:
SpoilerI thought they had killed Patrick. I was a little disappointed that the author copped out with a garage bomb. That didn't seem in line with the villain's motivation
One of my major issues with this book is that it is cluttered with point-of-view characters. We had Rebecca, Patrick, Henry, Maggie, Project Manager/Asante, and Nick. There may have been another, but I don't really care. This book is 295 pages with 83 chapters. It only covers four days. Six perspectives makes it super redundant. Why did we need Rebecca and Patrick? Why did we need Maggie and Nick? Why did we need Henry at all? I know that the villain's perspective is standard in thrillers, but that's one of the reasons I don't read a lot of them.
I'm not certain why Rebecca was chosen to be a POV character. She didn't really add... anything to the plot except as a way to make the Project Manager scarier?
SpoilerBut don't tell me this guy is uber smart and has contingencies and then he comes at a scared teenage girl with a loaded syringe in his hand? What an idiot- of course she runs.
Nick also bothered me, but I think I was supposed to like him. He apparently had shown up in a few previous books? Whatever. He was an entitled jerk who got jealous every time Maggie so much as looked at another dude. He drove by her house and looked up the license plate number of another truck there! Red flag, dude, red flag. He was also somewhat pointless. He was there to add some weird tension, I think, and to supply the like two bits of plot-relevant info that he had.
I think this would have been a much stronger book with a smaller cast of characters. Part of the struggle was me jumping into the middle of series (although a series intended to let people jump in), but part of it was just bad writing. There were too many times that chapters had to skip back an hour and do it over and over so we could learn what the different characters did at the same time. We didn't need to watch every character learn about the bombing and make travel plans and arrive and see the place for the first time and introduce each other to every character.
ennime713's review against another edition
bobbikaye's review against another edition
drew5287's review against another edition
- Plot- or character-driven? A mix
- Strong character development? Yes
- Loveable characters? Yes
- Diverse cast of characters? Yes
- Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated
bookworm_enni's review against another edition