FitzSimmons’s winning sequel to 2015’s The Short Drop finds Gibson Vaughn, once a troubled teen, trying to be a good father and stable family man. When a voice from the past reaches out, he doesn’t hesitate to help. Judge Hammond Birk once saved Gibson’s life, giving him the choice between joining the Marines or going to prison. Now Birk suffers from dementia and is living in a trailer in rural Virginia. Though every instinct tells Gibson to walk away from an impossible situation, he agrees to find convicted swindler Charles Merrick’s hidden millions for Birk, who was one of Merrick’s victims. Unfortunately, Merrick’s release from federal prison is just weeks away, and a motley crew of the good, the bad, and the ugly are also looking for his ill-gotten gains. FitzSimmons’s complicated hero leaps off the page with intensity and good intentions, while a byzantine plot hums along, ensnaring characters into a tightening web of greed, betrayal, and violent death. Agent: David Hale Smith, Inkwell Management. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/01/2016 Release date: 10/01/2016 Genre: Fiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.