cover image The Second Life of Nick Mason

The Second Life of Nick Mason

Steve Hamilton, read by Ray Porter. Penguin Audio, , unabridged, 7 CDs, 8 hrs., $35 ISBN 978-0-451-48354-6

In two-time Edgar-winner Hamilton’s new series, protagonist Nick Mason’s first life ended when he began serving a 25-year sentence behind bars for participating in a robbery in which a federal agent was killed. His second life kicks in when he accepts Chicago crime kingpin Darius Cole’s alternate plan: spending the next 20 years on the outside, living large, but ready to obey his savior’s every whim. The apparently obvious choice has unforeseen consequences. Chief among them: Nick is not a murderer, regardless of his conviction, but Darius expects him to assassinate on demand. Along with an assortment of distinctive voices—Nick’s has a chip-on-his-shoulder edge, Darius’s is filled with calm gravitas—reader Porter delivers the protracted setup crisply and smoothly. Once Nick gets his initial assignment and is nearly killed himself, Hamilton’s prose gets leaner, the plot (involving crooked narcotics cops) gets trickier, and Porter increases the pace and the intensity. [em]A Putnam hardcover. (May) [/em]