Review Blog

Nov 22 2019

A minute to midnight by David Baldacci

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Atlee Pine book 2. Macmillan, 2019. ISBN: 9781509874460.
(Age: 15+) Recommended for lovers of thrillers. Themes: Kidnapping, Murder. In this exciting and suspenseful novel, Baldacci immediately grabs the reader's attention with a graphically described rescue of an abducted girl by the intrepid Atlee Pine, who then realises that she needs to resolve her anger about the mystery of the kidnapping of her twin sister thirty years ago. She returns to her hometown in Georgia, where not only does she uncover some of the secrets of her past, but faces a serial killer who leaves victims posed in a ritualistic way.
Baldacci's has a reputation as a leading thriller writer and it is easy to see why: the flow of his narrative, the short chapters, often with cliff hangers, and the interesting characters and settings all combine to make for a satisfying read. I had not read the first Atlee Pine book, but it was easy to follow both her character, with Baldacci giving enough background information about her for me to pick up this book and run with both her ability as an FBI agent to solve dreadful crimes, but her desire to find out what had happened to her sister so long ago. Her assistant, Blum, was also fully fleshed out and added to the interest of the story.
There are enough twists in the plot about the serial killer to ensure the reader is engrossed to the end, and the mystery surrounding her sister's kidnapping turns up many twists and turns that will surprise. And of course there is a cliff hanger at the end that will guarantee readers will want to return to Atlee's quest to solve the mystery of her past.
Pat Pledger

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