A King's Ransom, by James Grippando
Harper Collins - May 2001
ISBN: 0060192410 - Hardcover

Reviewed by Barbara Burher, MyShelf.Com
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When Matthew Rey, a commercial fisherman, is in Columbia on business, he is kidnapped by a band of guerrillas. Matthew's son, Nick, receives a three million dollar ransom demand. He is unaware that Matthew had purchased a kidnapping insurance policy for that amount.

Nick's appeals for help are refused by the FBI, who suspect that Matthew is not a fisherman but a drug smuggler; by the State Department, who cites official policy of not paying kidnappers; by the insurance company, who thinks Matthew is in league with the kidnapper; by his own law firm, who will represent the insurance company in a fraud case against Nick.

Nick enlists the aid of Alex Cabrero, a kidnapping negotiator, and they go to Columbia to try to free Matthew.

This is a story drawn from today's headlines, with its frightening implications. The characters are well-drawn; both the likeable ones, and the sadistic guerrilla leader, Joaquin, and the two-faced senior attorney, Duncan Felt.

The story is filled with action; the pace never slows down. The plot is gripping and realistic, full of twists and surprises, full of deceit and treachery. The reader is drawn to the struggle against the government agencies, the law firm and the guerrillas.

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