Four stars (of five)
Dobbs has waited six novels to concoct a Harry Jones-centric premise, but pulls out all the stops as he does so in this thriller. During a lazy afternoon together, Jones and his girlfriend Jemma make a promise to one another, followed soon by five words that change their entire relationship, and much of Harry’s life: ‘Tell me about your father.’ Johnnie Jones was hated by his son, who did all he could to distance himself from the man who left him a fortune. After losing most everything over the past year, Jemma is all Harry has left, but he must make the calculated risk losing her to uncover the truth about his dead father. As Jones begins with some general research, he uncovers that there was a group of seven undergrads, some of whom have died in mysterious ways. The deeper Jones digs the more bodies pile up and the deadlier things become. The stress of his investigation forces Jemma to make some tough decisions, which could come back to haunt her. What secrets did Johnnie take to his grave and who is trying to snuff out anyone who might want to share this with the younger Jones? Dobbs entertains the reader with some fascinating insight into the Harry Jones backstory and keeps the reader guessing from page to page.
While the Jones series has ebbed and flowed, it is well worth the invested time. At times political, the series is full of thrills and dry wit. It has kept me intrigued, even when the storylines proved a little less than enticing, as I hoped to see Harry Jones in new and mysterious ways. Dobbs lays out the groundwork for an exciting character and one who is ever-evolving, even as he holds a flame for being the next Bond. Dobbs constructs wonderful plots and some very fast-paced story arcs, all of which take Harry and the reader all over the world. Plausible, while still a little mystifying, but always well-worth the reading investment.
Kudos, Baron Dobbs for your work. I hope we can expect more from Jones in the coming years. I know I’ll tune in.