Harper / Harper Collins
August 2010/ ISBN 9780061827020
by Bob Walch
This debut thriller
introduces Steve Vail, a former FBI agent who couldn’t follow
the rules, so he is now a skilled mason. Vail slips back into his
former investigative role when he is coerced to match wits with
a killer who is knocking off the good guys with impunity.
At her wits’ end,
Deputy Assistant Director Kate Bannon can’t afford to lose
any more agents so she calls in the one person who she thinks might
be able to checkmate the agency’s clever adversary. Also,
if Vail’s highly unorthodox approach doesn’t get results
and he makes a serious misstep, no one is going to really miss this
What follows is a somewhat
uneven - but still entertaining - novel that is filled with quite
a few surprises as the Bricklayer charts his own course in bailing
his former bosses out of a very precarious situation.
to Lee Child’s Jack Reacher, this new hero has received some
highly complimentary reviews. The Bricklayer has been called
“dazzling” by Patricia Cornwell, “terrific”
by James Patterson and “a real winner” by Lee Child.
Yes, this is a mostly satisfying read, but I think I’ll wait
for the next couple of installments of this new series before I
move Steve Vail into Reacher’s chair!