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21 July 2013

Frank Hughes: Devil's Run

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Action-packed and humorous
Devil's Run is an enjoyable page-turning, action-packed thriller. It has a bit of a James Bond escapist theme with "hero" Nick Craig doing exciting and impossible things.

Nick Craig is a top Customs Agent who became a Private Investigator after his wife dies at the WTC. He is hired by a wealthy businessman to find his son who has gone missing after he has become involved with an active environmental group. Craig discovers finds that the group may have tried to sabotage a prestige resort for the mega-rich in the Colorado mountains which includes an environmentally sensitive disused mining site.

Nick discovers that his client is a major player in the company running the resort which is owned by the beautiful Latina wife of an important US Senator. He also finds that his most-hated ex-boss is also working security for the resort, which is run like a fortress, has its own cable car and ski runs and costs a fortune to join and run. Where does the money come from?

Soon Nick get involved in a myriad of chases, gunfights, explosions, ambushes,  gets shot at during a ski-chase by a Howitzer and all kinds of impossible adventures that would make good copy for a James Bond movie. He even goes to Mexico to find the missing youth and gets caught up in a gun battle with a drug cartel. Despite these unbelievable things, I found myself cheering Nick along from one death-defying action to another.

Nick also follows similar fictional thriller heros with his sarcastic and wise-cracking repartee, but not as caustic and side-splitting as John Corey (Nelson DeMille) and Vin Cooper (David Rollins).

As long as you read this as inspired escapist action you will enjoy this book. Frank Hughes has a huge imagination for a new writer with easy reading writing skills and I look forward to more. With Nick Craig, he has created a damaged but fascinating and lovable hero. Craig is certainly hetereosexual but didn't take the opportunity to show it - maybe next time this would add something more to his skill set. When the smoke has cleared there is certainly scope for more Nick Craig thrillers.

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