Wednesday, May 25, 2022

23. The Protector by David Morrell

Here in Montreal, we have two library systems, the local municipal libraries (of which Mordecai-Richler I frequent often) and the BANQ which is the provincial system (as well as being the official archive for the province).  The BANQ has a really beautiful building downtown which I used to go to a lot, especially when I was studying.  However, since the pandemic and the efficiency of the municipal inter-library loan system, I hadn't been in a few years.  I volunteered to go with my child's school trip, renewed my card and in the few minutes I had to spare between corralling and shushing rugrats, I snagged this David Morrell.  I am actively hunting for his medieval mysteries, but he is always competent and this looked like a fun, quick read.

Morrell seems to have made a niche for himself as extreme researcher of cool ass shit.  In this case, he goes deep on the elite protection industry.  Cavanaugh is an ex-Navy Seal who runs a small team that protects and hides people under extreme threat.  Here, he is hired to protect a scientist who is already holed up in a warehouse hideout.  When he goes there, the shit hits the fan and Cavanaugh learns that the guy discovered the ultimate drug (instantly addictive) and that the cartel is after him.  There are several twists that weren't too hard to predict (even too easy, at a couple of points I found Cavanaugh to be stupid to not cotton to what was going on), that of course lead to Cavanaugh on his own, on the run.

There was another early plot point error that surprised me, where they sent the client out to get his fake ID created before the plastic surgery they were planning and I was off on the wrong foot.  Once we get into the main plot, it's pretty cool.  Morrell's research comes into play and we get lots of cool techniques for going undercover on the lam, armouring vehicles (and how to knock other vehicles off the road), making fake wounds and all kinds of cool little details.  The bad guy is a real hateful prick too.  A bit shakey at the beginning but ended up being as I had expected a quick fun read.

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