cover image The Assassin

The Assassin

W. E. B. Griffin. Jove Books, $7.99 (464pp) ISBN 978-0-515-11113-2

In this fifth installment of Griffin's Badge of Honor series, members of Philadelphia's law enforcement community are again faced with the difficult task of protecting their city. Teamed in an uneasy alliance with the Secret Service, Philly's cops must thwart an assassination attempt on the vice president of the United States during his upcoming visit. With only a typewritten note to go on, rookie detective Matthew Payne and head of Special Operations Peter Wohl must race to unearth the wannabe assassin--a petrochemicals market analyst who believes God has commanded him to kill the veep. Although the book is nominally about Payne and Wohl and about their chase, the most visible character here is the police department, or rather the interplay between various factions therein. As with his earlier police novels, Griffin ( Men in Blue ; The Witness ) seldom treads where other authors dare not go. However, this book succeeds because of the authority with which he depicts events and locations. Additionally, the slick but restrained pace at which the story unfolds makes this an enjoyable and gripping read. (May)