The SentryBook - 2011
Dru Rayne and her uncle fled to L.A. after Hurricane Katrina; but now, five years later, they face a different danger. When Joe Pike witnesses Dru's uncle beaten by a protection gang, he offers his help, but neither of them want it--and neither do the federal agents mysteriously watching them.
As the level of violence escalates, and Pike himself becomes a target, he and Elvis Cole learn that Dru and her uncle are not who they seem--and that everything he thought he knew about them has been a lie. A vengeful and murderous force from their past is now catching up to them... and only Pike and Cole stand in the way.
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There is something about the noble character Joe Pike. His courageousness endears him to the reader. Pike is an ex-mercenary, ex-Los Angeles Police Officer and a man who cares for the less fortunate or abused.
As this excellent story unfolds, Joe is at a gas station when he sees two men swagger into a sandwich shop. Their body language tells Joe that the men are out to do something malicious. He enters the shop to see what's transpiring. The two men are beating the shop owner and show no sign of letting up. Joe takes out one of the attackers and the other runs away. The police arrest the attacker who Joe took care of but later that night, someone trashes the inside of the shop with paint.
The owner's niece, Dru Rayne, asks Joe to help. Joe learns that the gang is trying to shake down the store owner for protection money. Joe approaches that gang leader and obtains the man's assurance that the hostilities toward the store owner will stop.
Joe believes that he has removed the threat and he and Dru enjoy a coffee break and visit. Dru tells him about her past and shows him a photo of her daughter. It seems as if this could be the start of a romantic attachment.
The next night, the violence escalates. Someone enters the store and creates havoc and a sign is painted on the wall, "I am here."
The story continues at a fast pace. Violence and suspense mount as Joe, the authorities and others search for Dru and her uncle. There are plot twists, We don't know how Joe will be able to save Dru and complications change the direction of the story in a realistic manner and surprising manner.
I found myself totally drawn to this story and now know what the meaning of a white knuckle story is. I believe that this will be one of the best books of the year.