cover image The Lost Key

The Lost Key

Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison. Putnam, $26.95 (464p) ISBN 978-0-399-16476-7

Coulter and Ellison's suspenseful sequel to 2013's The Final Cut finds Nicholas Drummond, once a New Scotland Yard star, now an FBI agent based in New York City. On his first day on the job for the FBI, Nicholas and his partner, Mike Caine, investigate a fatal stabbing in downtown Manhattan. The victim, Jonathan Pearce, was an antiquarian who owned extremely valuable books that he refused to sell. He was also a military historian%E2%80%94but that doesn't adequately explain his possession of classified intelligence material. The victim's beguiling daughter, Sophie Pearce, is a translator at the U.N., and Nicholas wonders if her professional ties might have something to do with papa's murder. Meanwhile, Britain's chancellor of the Exchequer, Alfie Stanford, drops dead. Can this be a coincidence? The authors' sophisticated third-person narration smoothly propels the action to the exciting climax. Readers may want to see a little more of the charming Mike Caine in the next installment. Agent: Robert Gottlieb, Trident Media Group. (Sept.)