THE REPO: A Jack Merchant and Sarah Ballard Novel
With this thriller full of many original and violent moments of action, mostly at sea, Eidson (One Bad Thing; Frames per Second) introduces a powerful new series that could kick his career into high gear. Jack Merchant, a DEA agent who took early retirement after a disastrous operation, lives on the Lila, his 40-foot sloop docked in the marina at Charlestown, a Boston suburb where he once spent a year drastically culling the drug dealer herd and making lots of enemies—a fact that will soon both haunt and help him. The Lila soaks up every cent he makes as a photographer, and when Sarah Ballard, a woman from his past now running her father's old business of repossessing boats for banks, comes to him with an offer of work tracking down a missing couple and their expensive yacht, he finds himself intrigued—and attracted by Sarah. But she's been through some terrifying times, and Jack quickly realizes "she wasn't looking for hugs and kisses." A lot of the book's strength comes from the way Eidson makes Sarah's roughness and coldness inevitable and convincing. Exceptionally interesting minor players include a cowardly, conniving banker and a dangerously psychotic software tycoon and his virtually invincible "handyman." With a smart new publisher, Eidson seems set for some smooth sailing. (June 1)
Forecast:The resemblance of Merchant and Ballard to another Boston-based duo with a push-pull relationship—Dennis Lehane's Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennar—can only help, as will the blurbs from William G. Tapply, Robert B. Parker and Peter Straub.
Release date: 06/01/2003