cover image Torture Man

Torture Man

Warren Adler. RosettaBooks, $14.99 ISBN 978-0-795346-91-0

A chance encounter between stranded travelers offers an interesting take on the inherent conflict between security and freedom in Adler’s (The War of the Roses) novel of ideas, which evolves into an exciting thriller. Idealist Sarah Raab, the head of the New York office of Rights Abuse Watch International, is desperate to get home from Washington, D.C. When her flight is cancelled, she ends up sharing a cab to Union Station with a stranger, Carl Helman, who generously pays for her Amtrak ticket. During their trip together, Sarah learns that Carl, who sees himself as a warrior-savior engaged in the “ultimate war between powers of light and darkness,” has a very different view of the world, which Adler later reveals derives from his experience as a counterinsurgent devoted to battling terrorists. Carl’s skills come in handy after Sarah’s 11-year-old daughter, Rachel, is abducted, making the tension between ends and means all too real for her. The plot takes some unexpected turns en route to a dramatic and satisfying conclusion. (BookLife)