Red Sky

Chris Goff. Crooked Lane, $25.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-68331-126-3

Goff’s fine sequel to 2015’s Dark Waters takes U.S. Diplomatic Security Service agent Raisa Jordan to Ukraine to investigate a plane crash that killed a fellow agent, George McClasky. A DSS legend, McClasky was escorting fugitive Kia Zhen, a Chinese-American from San Francisco, back to the U.S. to face espionage charges. At the crash site in a farm field, she realizes there’s more to the tragedy and McClasky’s mission than she thought. And she’s right: the airliner was downed by a team of Russians using a land-based railgun, a secret weapon in development by the U.S. and other countries. The Russians intend to use the gun again in an attack that will help them take over Ukraine. It’s a convoluted plot, but the action is straightforward; readers will breeze past the political complications to race along with Jordan and her love interest, journalist Nye Davis, as they battle to prevent the Russian attack. Jordan’s indomitable spirit keeps her moving forward, especially when the bad guys, and even the good guys, tell her to back off. [em]Agent: Peter Rubie, Fine Print Literary Management. (June) [/em]