Book review: No Man’s Land by David Baldacci

Wednesday, November 9, 2016 Permalink

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.

Book review: No Man’s Land by David BaldacciNo Man's Land (John Puller Series)
by David Baldacci
Series: John Puller #4
Published by Macmillan
on October 25th 2016
Genres: Thriller / Suspense
ISBN: 1447277856, 9781447277859
Pages: 352

John Puller's mother disappeared nearly 30 years ago. Despite an intensive search and investigation, she was never seen again.

But new allegations have come to light suggesting that Puller's father--now suffering from dementia and living in a VA hospital--may have murdered his wife.

Puller is officially barred from working on the case--and faces a potential court martial if he disobeys the order--but he knows he can't sit this investigation out.

When intelligence operative Veronica Knox turns up, Puller realizes that there is far more to this case than he had originally thought.

Puller will stop at nothing to discover the truth about what happened to his mother...even if it means proving that his father is a killer.

In The Escape it was personal for John Puller as his older brother Robert had supposedly escaped from jail. #Spoileralert – he was innocent of all charges and is back in the army where he’s seemingly doing exciting and important things.

John’s back in CID and continues to be held in high esteem as a military investigator, but he’s again caught up in a case that’s personal… and one that’s not officially his.

There’s a concurrent plot running through this novel (which is in my version’s backcover blurb, but not above) and it centres around the release of a man from prison after serving a 10 year sentence. Paul Rogers is a man of mystery. He kept to himself in prison and a minor scuffle early in his time meant other prisoners stayed away from the moody and menacing man.

It doesn’t take long before we get an idea of who Paul really is and what he’s capable of. And it’s not pretty. But… given we’re privy to something affecting his mind and body, we’re forced to wonder if there could be more to the story than meets the eye?

Of course there bloody is and ultimately the two cases intersect – albeit in a pretty random way. (Which is part of the ironical fate of Puller’s mother.)

I note in my review of The Escape the character of Veronica Knox did little for me. She kinda rejected John’s advances in book #3 but the super spy is back, though perhaps with an ulterior motive.

“Part of your job is to lie, to deceive. I never know when I’m on the receiving end of one of those mortar rounds, Knox. It’s just how I see it. I’m sorry. It’s just how I’m wired.” p 275

And, big brother Robert Puller again plays a role from afar… and it has to be said that I have a bit of a crush on the older, smarter Puller brother and really really hope Baldacci gives him his own series or (at least) book at some point.

Conspiracy theorists will love the secret military experiments involving exoskeletons (or something) and Baldacci also takes us into the world of the eccentric rich willing to backstab their buddies – and the government – to make a buck. All of which makes this yet another enjoyable read from the dependable Baldacci.

No Man’s Land by David Baldacci was published in Australia by Pan Macmillan and is now available.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. 


  • Stormi D Johnson
    November 9, 2016

    Sounds like a good series, not sure why I haven’t read this author when I know he is very popular.

    • Debbish
      November 9, 2016

      I’m really enjoying Baldacci’s newest (Amos Decker) series Stormi. He published the second of those this year.

  • Emma
    November 10, 2016

    This is an author who I know about but don’t think I’ve ever read. It sounds like I’d enjoy so not sure why.

    • Debbish
      November 10, 2016

      Oh yes Emma. This is a good series, or the Amos Decker Memory Man series.

  • Jon Gaffney
    December 2, 2020

    I’ve read all the John Puller books but am blocking out of my mind what happened to his mother. Somebody please tell me!

  • Jon Gaffney
    December 2, 2020

    Reading Daylight, Atlee Pine #3. Author /editor has made an error. “A captain in the Navy was of equal rank with a major in the Army. Tsk, tsk!
    A Navy captain is equal to a full, bird Colonel in the Army, an O-6
    Jon W Gaffney, Capt. MC, USNR-R

  • Cindy Leroy
    August 18, 2023

    I just finished The 6:20 Man.
    Loved it hope to see more of Travis Devine.

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