The book ended up delving a little into conspiracies and spies and the like, so my excitement waned a little (as it’s not a topic of interest to me) but I really liked Pine and the support cast offered in the first of that series. There were a few changes to some of the key players in the new release, A Minute to Midnight, which I enjoyed more than its predecessor. I still loved Pine… and found the plot itself more engaging.
I’ve made no secret of my love for Amos Decker, a character created by David Baldacci four years ago via the first novel in the series, Memory Man. It was the perfect opener because that’s exactly who and what Decker is thanks to a football injury he sustained when younger.
It left him with hyperthymesia – the inability to forget anything, as well as seeing ‘colours’ around people. The first book opened 16mths after his wife and daughter had been murdered, when former cop Decker had hit rock bottom.
Vengeance, ahem, justice awakened him however and he’s been working with the FBI since, as part of a small task force – though generally given a bit of a free rein.
In almost every David Baldacci book review I write I comment on how much I love his Amos Decker (Memory Man) series, as well as the Will Robie and John Puller series. And I always mention I’m not a fan of his earlier Camel Club series. I’d say that I won’t do that this time around but I already have, plus it’s a little relevant.
Baldacci’s latest book is prefaced by a letter to readers, introducing his first female lead – FBI Agent Atlee Pine. Obviously he’s written other female characters but Atlee is the standalone lead and he comments that she’s one of the most unique characters he’s created. (This from the man who gave us Amos Decker and his hyperthymesia!) Obviously my expectations were high. I’ve read some AMAZING female leads – Candice Fox delivers many, and just recently I revisited Michael Connelly’s Renee Ballard. And on the character front Baldacci certainly offers up a wonderful new protagonist in Atlee (or Pine, as Baldacci calls her).
I happily admitted I fell a little in love with Amos Decker when I met him in Memory Man – David Baldacci’s first book in the series featuring the man who experienced a head injury giving him perfect recall (hence the title #obvs).
The Fallen is the fourth book in the series and probably my second favourite to the original as it’s very much about Decker and his investigation skills and there’s probably less workplace / territorial game-playing in the background.
I mentioned in my review of David Baldacci’s previous Will Robie book, The Guilty (published in 2015), that it wasn’t a series I knew well. In fact, I was a latecomer to the series but that book took Will (and his erstwhile partner Jessica Reel) out of his usual spy / assassin / government agent role and had a more personal twist.
At the time I appreciated the deviation because I was worried having not read previous books in the series may have been a disadvantage. It wasn’t. Similarly, it doesn’t matter if you’re meeting these characters for the first time in this latest installment as Baldacci does a great job at introducing them to us via James Bond-esque style opening sequences.
I was exceedingly tempted to leave this review until 2nd May to publish because apparently I posted my review of the first book in the Amos Decker series, Memory Man, on that date in 2015; and the second, The Last Mile on the same day last year.
But, well… what can I say? I’m impatient and couldn’t really be arsed holding off for another week or two.
What I will say however is that I seriously LOVED this book.
I’ve mentioned before that David Baldacci is one of my go-to authors. I haven’t loved ‘all’ of his series, but have enjoyed most and his John Puller series is no different.
I reviewed The Escape – the third book in the series two years ago (and my Goodreads account tells me I read #1 but missed #2). It’s the sort of series that doesn’t really matter if you come upon them part-way through as Baldacci is well-versed in getting readers up to speed without laborious amounts of detail.
I’d like to pretend that I scheduled my review of The Last Mile by David Baldacci today on purpose. But alas, it’s mostly coincidence that (according to Facebook) – it’s a year ago on this very day – I posted my review of Memory Man, the first book in Baldacci’s new series featuring the quirky Amos Decker.
I adored that book and fell a little in love with Amos Decker. And neither he (nor Baldacci) have done anything in this second outing to diminish my affection.
In all honesty I have no idea at all if I’ve read any of the Will Robie series by David Baldacci. In fact, I didn’t know it was a series until I discovered my latest arrival, The Guilty, was number four.
I inwardly groaned and hoped I didn’t struggle with the book given my lack of backstory…. or get bored to tears with too much provided.