5 stars out of 5
They're baaaaack - the government-sanctioned assassination team of Will Robie and Jessica Reel. And I couldn't be happier.
Well, maybe a little happier; this latest installment didn't impress me quite as much as its predecessor, The Hit. But the difference wasn't enough to knock my rating down a whole star, so 5 it is.
This one puts the dynamic duo in the crosshairs of a high-ranking U.S. official who's convinced they should be thrown in jail for straying from the script on a previous mission (fact is, they didn't follow orders; and even though in the end their actions saved the day, not following the letter of the law is an irritant in some circles). But the trump card remains in their pocket - approval by none other than the President of the United States.
As the book begins, the pair are put through rigorous training in preparation for a new mission to eliminate a world leader who's hiding out in France. It's clear from the start, however, that what doesn't make you stronger may well kill you - and the two begin to suspect that the latter may well be the real intent of the training. Meantime, Jessica is forced to deal with ghosts from her past that end up threatening them both. Then, they're given another search-and-seizure mission that not a single person believes they can pull off; even Jessica and Will have their doubts.
In retrospect, some of the situations are a bit hard to believe, but honestly, the action never slowed down enough for me to notice while I was reading; all I could think about was getting closer to the end. Another winner for sure!
The Target by David Baldacci (Grand Central Publishing, April 2014); 432 pp.