The Manhattan Job (Spider Heist Thrillers Book 3) by Jason Kasper – #BookReview – #financialthrillers

Book Blurb:

The Manhattan Job is the third installment of the heart-stoppingly suspenseful Spider Heist series by USA Today bestselling author Jason Kasper.

The Manhattan Job by Jason KasparBefore she was a thief, Blair Morgan was a disgraced FBI agent…her corrupt former boss sending her to jail as a scapegoat.

Now a world-class thief, it’s time for Blair’s revenge.

Blair has all the evidence she needs to take her old boss down…she just needs to steal it first.

But when another master thief beats her to the punch, Blair finds her evidence up for sale in a bidding war between her crew, her enemy, and a mysterious figure known only as Fixer. The journey will take her crew from their LA hideout to Washington DC and Manhattan, where the final victor will be determined once and for all.

With ten days until the auction, Blair’s crew must find a way to uncover Fixer’s identity and convince him to join their cause.

If they can’t get leverage, the man who put Blair in jail goes free forever…

…and then he’ll be the one coming after her.

His Review:

Really successful thieves are well educated and smart. Many of them go into politics. Jim Jacobson has risen from the ranks of the FBI to state and federal government. He had his eye rising from a seat in Albany to a chair in Washington DC. Along the way he did not hesitate to do everything necessary for self- promotion.

The Manhattan Job by Jason KasparA series of four digital tapes could derail his chances for upward mobility and a possible run for president. He was determined to acquire those tapes and continue climbing the ladder to the federal government. Standing in his way is a group of professional thieves’ intent on exposing him for the corrupt politician he has become.

The group is called “The Sky Thieves.” Trained Federal Bureau of Investigation operatives are working on both sides of this novel. Blair is a former FBI Agent burned by the aspiring Mr. Jacobson. She is being trained by fellow master criminals including Sterling who was broken out of a maximum-security prison by the Sky Thieves. Their current mission is to stop this man on his road to the presidency.

The book reads like a primer or introduction into the many tools available to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and its’ operatives. Criminals of course soon gain access to these tools and they work on both sides of the law. Many of the tools are the things of former science fiction! Laser voice recorders and observation tools, heat sensors showing people in rooms, disguises which would earn an Oscar for a set designer and devices which disarm phones without detection are just a few of the tools available.

Read the book and see if you can identify other science fiction tools. Quantico is a very good finishing school for those who would become master criminals. Enjoy! Currently on pre-order. 4.5 stars – CE Williams

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from publisher through NetGalley. These are my honest opinions.

Rosepoint Publishing: Four point Five Stars 4 1/2 stars

Book Details:

Genre: Financial Thrillers, Heist Thrillers, International Mystery & Crime
Publisher: Severn River Publishing
ASIN: B08CPV5WVH
Print Length: 416 pages
Publication Date: To be released May 4, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Link: The Manhattan Job [Amazon] 
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Jason Kasper - authorThe Author: Jason Kasper is the USA Today bestselling author of the Spider Heist, American Mercenary, and Shadow Strike thriller series. Before his writing career he served in the US Army, beginning as a Ranger private and ending as a Green Beret captain. Jason is a West Point graduate and a veteran of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, and was an avid ultramarathon runner, skydiver, and BASE jumper, all of which inspire his fiction.

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©2021 CE Williams – V Williams

Bitter Rain (Kate Fox Book 3) by Shannon Baker – a #BookReview – #mysteries

“A lump the size of a Bartlett pear made its way down her throat.

Book Blurb:

Bitter Rain by Shannon BakerSheriff Kate Fox is still settling into her new role when Deputy Kyle Red Owl’s sister, Shelly, vanishes from the nearby Lakota reservation. Convinced it’s an “Indian issue,” neighboring sheriffs are reluctant to get involved. Tempers flare—and Kate knows things are bound to get even more heated.

But when Kate and Kyle start to gather evidence, they realize the case isn’t at all what it seems.

Their search for Shelly has uncovered deep-buried family secrets, and soon, Shelly isn’t the only one in danger.

As Kate struggles to nail down a suspect—and with the truth seeming just out of reach—the new sheriff knows she’s running out of time.

And then she makes a big mistake. Can Kate right the wrong in time to save the life that’s hanging in the balance? 

My Review:

The storyline centers around the Nebraska Sandhills across the South Dakota state line and the crushing poverty level of the Lakota at the Antelope Ridge Reservation. I enjoy books about the Midwest and any parts east of my native California—always so eye-opening. The Sandhills situate in an area of low population, cattle outnumbering humans by approximately fifty to one.

Bitter Rain by Shannon BakerIn this episode of the series, Sheriff Kate Fox is called to the site of an apparent accident but finding no one there except Sheriff Lee Barnett on scene from a different county is sent away with the explanation it must have been an auto from the local rez and whoever was driving had someone pick them up. It’s obviously good ole boy territory and as a newly elected female sheriff, she’s not totally accepted, particularly when it appears to be an Indian issue.

But Kate had gotten a call from a terrified young female pleading for help. And she is one who listens to her gut feeling. The missing female turns out to be her own Deputy’s sister, Shelly, and now Deputy Kyle Red Owl is also heavily drawn into the search.

Turns out, she is pretty much blocked in her investigation at every turn, but she does manage a small lead every now and then only serving to further muddy the waters.

In the meantime, the area not known for friendly rain is experiencing one gully washer after another, which doesn’t help.

Further hampering interview efforts besides the divisive racial issue is her own family. As the middle child with seven brothers and sisters (or is it nine?), either the oldest, youngest, or any in between is constantly intruding on her time. It doesn’t help that her immense family and familial obligations and expectations seem to override pretty much any other minute she isn’t thinking about her missing niece. Well, bring it on!

The conditions of the people populating the reservation describes conditions beyond dismally, buying into the old stereotype, and painting a crushing scene of desperation.

A lot going on in this novel, the mystery, the family sub-plot, and the deeply descriptive prose of the area. The author is nothing if not full of analogies and has one for every occasion:

“We stood as natural as ketchup on ice cream.”
“To say I was relieved to wish them a fun day would be like calling Lake Michigan a puddle.”

 Philosophical thoughts:

“It was the face of fake compassion I hated worse than cooked cabbage.”
“It’ll be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”
“It’ll stop hurting when the pain goes away.”

As a newly elected sheriff, Kate has a lot to prove—not just to the county apparently—but also to her family. A rather unique writing style that cried “tilt” as often as it spoke a deeply meaning thought. A theme of hanging in there, overcoming, concessions, and adapting.
The conclusion included a twist I certainly didn’t see coming, although all the leads were to the over-obvious. Interesting, thoughtful, deeply disturbing, and also engaging and entertaining.

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley. It appears this novel was previously released in 2018, new cover, but I’m in for a penny, in for a pound, and looking forward to Book 4.

Rosepoint Rating: Four stars 4 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Women’s Detective Fiction, Amateur Sleuth Mysteries, Mystery Series
Publisher: Severn River Publishing

  • ASIN : B08PDVXL26

Print Length: 276 pages
Publication Date: February 9, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley 

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Kobo

Shannon Baker - authorThe Author: Shannon Baker is author of the Kate Fox Mystery series. Set in rural Nebraska cattle country, according to a starred review in Library Journal, “Baker’s writing evokes the beauty of the Nebraska Sandhills, and her colorful cast of secondary characters adds a depth of charm.” Now a resident of Tucson, Baker spent 20 years in the Nebraska Sandhills, where cattle outnumber people by more than 50:1. Shannon is proud to have been chosen Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ 2014 and 2017 Writer of the Year.

Baker also writes the Nora Abbott mystery series, a fast-paced mix of Hopi Indian mysticism, environmental issues, and murder. The first in the series, Height of Deception, is set in Flagstaff, AZ, where she lived for several years and worked for The Grand Canyon Trust, a hotbed of environmentalists who, usually, don’t resort to murder. It is a 2013 finalist in the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards.

A lover of the great outdoors, she can be found backpacking in the Rockies, traipsing to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, skiing mountains and plains, kayaking lakes, hiking, cycling, and diving whenever she gets the chance. Having the desert for a backyard is a daily thrill, bringing javelinas, rattlesnakes, zillions of birds, and spectacular sunsets every day.

Arizona sunsets notwithstanding, Baker is, and always will be, a Nebraska Husker. Go Big Red.

©2021 V Williams