The Fallen (Amos Decker, #4)by Published 17 Apr 2018
|The Fallen (Amos Decker, #4).pdf|
|Publisher||Grand Central Publishing|
David Baldacci returns with the next blockbuster thriller in his #1 New York Times bestselling Memory Man series featuring detective Amos Decker--the man who can forget nothing.
Amos Decker and his journalist friend Alex Jamison are visiting the home of Alex's sister in Barronville, a small town in western Pennsylvania that has been hit hard economically. When Decker is out on the rear deck of the house talking with Alex's niece, a precocious eight-year-old, he notices flickering lights and then a spark of flame in the window of the house across the way. When he goes to investigate he finds two dead bodies inside and it's not clear how either man died. But this is only the tip of the iceberg. There's something going on in Barronville that might be the canary in the coal mine for the rest of the country.
Faced with a stonewalling local police force, and roadblocks put up by unseen forces, Decker and Jamison must pull out all the stops to solve the case. And even Decker's infallible memory may not be enough to save them.
"The Fallen (Amos Decker, #4)" Reviews
Seemed like a Jack Reacher novel to me. Amos Decker and his FBI partner Alex Jamison take a vacation to Baronville to visit Alex's sister, brother-in-law to celebrate her niece's sixth birthday, only to discover two murdered people in a neighbor's abandoned house. Baronville is a broken town, with its original factories shuttered, and some hope from a huge mail-order shipping warehouse. Amos figures out the identity of the corpses and learns there are been four other recent unsolved murders, which eventually are pinned on John Baron, the despised descendant of the town's founder and scion. Dogged as ever, Amos keeps digging and discovers a truly rotten core and some despicable people. The highlight of the book is Amos's relationship with Alex's niece, Zoe, with whom he makes a special connection.
This Baronville is one messed up place. This was an incredible, fast-paced book with so many different criminal aspects going on, along with a messed up supporting cast. Seriously, some of these people were train wrecks of human beings. Even though some are what you would usually say are no likeable, it actually does not even cross your mind because you are too busy being amused by these messed up human beings to even consider liking them or not. The plot has a personal touch to it and also has Decker going through different changes with his head injury, but really it was the criminal activity of this book that has you wondering what the hell is wrong with this town and its citizens. I really was trying to predict who was behind everything but in the end is was futile because there were so many a-holes running around the pages of this book.
My quick and simple overall: awesome and intriguing read with one hell of a supporting cast.
David Baldacci, author of some 35 plus novels, definitely needs no introduction. He is the bestselling author of the Memory Man series. The Fallen marks the fourth and latest chapter in this popular set of novels, featuring enigmatic lead Amos Decker. The Fallen is a thrill ride from start to finish and I guarantee this book will draw appeal for loyal fans of the series and newcomers.
Amos Decker is supposed to be on a short vacation with FBI partner Alex Jamison, in the small town of Baronville, situated in Pennsylvania. However, as quickly as the two agents try to relax, their holiday plans are derailed. A murder investigation begins in the town where Alex and Amos are holidaying. It seems both agents can’t help themselves, they soon become embroiled in the murder case. With a rising body count, it is a race against the clock to help solve these murders. The more Amos and Alex search for the truth, the more shocking the revelations involving the small town of Baronville becomes. Amos draws on his unique memory skills to try to crack this case. But even this hardened and wise team may not be able to solve the case unscathed. It is a fight to the death to stop any further murders from taking place and to try and save the desperately crumbling town of Baronville from further despair.
The Fallen, the latest novel from international bestselling author David Baldacci, was one exhilarating thriller that kept me completely engaged for the entire novel. It is my first outing with Mr Baldacci. I’m not sure why it has taken me until now to experience his writing and enjoy his books. Anyhow, I hope to rectify my gap in Baldacci’s works and The Fallen was a great start.
For those who are long standing fans of Baldacci’s work and the Memory Man series, I am confident that The Fallen will not disappoint in any shape or form. For freshman to the series and Baldacci’s work, I can attest to this novel being a great place to start your David Baldacci journey. If you do have the opportunity to catch up on the previous novels in the Memory Man series, I would suggest going in this direction as it will enhance your reading experience of The Fallen. However, as I am pushed for reading time, I was satisfied with the amount of back detail Baldacci provides to new readers of the Amos Decker series. From very early on the piece I had a good grasp of Amos, his partner, tragic background and the unique gift that he brings to his investigations.
What I loved most about The Fallen was not just the richly layered narrative, which contained plenty of tangents to keep the reader on their toes. Rather, I found The Fallen to be a fine ode to small town America. Baldacci uses The Fallen as a vehicle to highlight the issues at stake in small towns such as Baronville, which are dotted all across the US. With a downturn in manufacturing and production, resulting in significant job losses across these towns, the future is bleak. Many of these so-called ghost towns, provide the breeding grounds for unsavoury activities to spark. In Baronville’s case, the employment deficit has resulted in a huge rise in the drug trade. With the increase of the drug trade, the conditions prove fertile for other negative activities, such as murder and violence. Baldacci ties this in expertly within his novel and illuminates a country-wide problem very well within The Fallen.
Baldacci balances the personal issues of his leads well within a compelling narrative. Baldacci reveals just enough of the personal side of each of these characters, so that we develop quite the attachment to these leads. The use of Amos Decker’s memory skills, where Baldacci works to highlight the pitfalls, as well as the positive points of this impairment, made for an interesting read. The Baronville case the duo work to solve is a complicated one and it certainly got my brain ticking away the whole time I spent with this book. I do like books that make me think hard and this is one of those novels. Baldacci knows a thing or two about action scenes and The Fallen is a perfect example of Baldacci’s ability to present a solid action-thriller based novel. This was one heart pounding thriller, where Baldacci issues surprises his audience right up until the end of the novel. The sense of mystery also runs right through the very core of The Fallen.
Overall, I was impressed by my first David Baldacci novel and I am tempted to explore the previous novels in this series, along with other works by this author. It amazes me that Baldacci can balance out his writing so well and pen so many different characters. Spreading himself across a range of different series and genres is no easy task, but it seems Baldacci has it down pat. I found The Fallen, Baldacci’s latest, an entertaining read and a novel that I would not hesitate to recommend. If you are already a fan of Mr Baldacci’s work I’m sure you will agree The Fallen is one action packed new episode of the Memory Man series.
*I wish to thank the publisher, Pan Macmillan for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes.
What can I say about this book besides it's another stellar entry into an already great series? Honestly, not much except that this is the fourth featuring former police detective Amos Decker, who landed a spot on my Top 10 book "heroes" list right from the first. That's partly because he's an Ohio boy (I've been a proud Buckeye State resident most of my life) and a football standout - that is, until he took a nearly deadly hit on his first play as a member of the Cleveland Browns.
He didn't die, obviously, but he did end up with some rather unusual after-effects - most notably being hyperthymesia, or the ability to remember every single moment of every single day and call any one of them up at will. He also acquired synesthia, or the association of colors with people and objects. Particularly in his career as a detective, those rare abilities usually are extremely helpful, but in his personal life, not so much. There's no escaping, for instance, the years-ago horror of the brutal murder of his beloved wife and young daughter. He's also a bit emotionally challenged, in that for the most part he's unable to express his feelings. Those qualities make him a unique character - the biggest reason I'm a big fan.
These days, Amos and his partner Alex Jamison work with the FBI (another personal "connection" since my late mother's maiden name is Jamison). As this story begins, they are in small-town Baronville (located in northwestern Pennsylvania not far from the Ohio border - another fun coincidence, since I live in northeastern Ohio not far from the Pennsylvania line). They've come to visit Alex's sister Amanda, her husband Frank and their daughter Zoe, who not long ago relocated in Baronville when Frank took a job at a huge new distribution center. Still another coincidence; the area in which I live - just off Interstate 80 - is a hot spot for distribution centers as well.
Amos and Alex are hoping for a few days of down time, but that changes quickly when Amos notices some strange sights and sounds at the house behind the one they're in. Unable to resist checking things out, Amos finds two dead bodies. Poking around results in another serious head injury - one that has mind-altering potential. Further investigation, with help from local cops, reveals other recent murders - far more than would be expected in such a small town. Among the suspects is the hermit-like descendent of the town's founding father, who was a highly successful industrial magnate believed to have caused the town's steep economic decline and, not inconsequentally, the opoid addiction that's running rampant in and around the community.
Amos has to work to win the confidence of the local police, and gaining traction in that area puts him and his partner in the crosshairs of the bad guys. Murders keep piling up, and it's clear that someone is intent on adding Amos and Alex to that stack. Can they find out what's really going on and who's behind it before they become victims as well? Ah, but that's for me to know and other readers to find out. The only thing I'll pass on is that this is another winner - highly recommended!
Amos Decker and Alex Jamison are on vacation, enforced for Amos who tags along with Alex as he has nowhere else to go. She’s visiting her sister in Baronville, Pennsylvania to celebrate her niece’s upcoming 6th birthday. On the first night, Decker stumbles upon a double murder next door in the middle of a storm. Instead of low-key downtime, Decker and Jamison are drawn into the investigation to assist local law enforcement because this is no typical case.
The story tackles a contemporary issue, the raging opioid crisis which seems to have impacted this small, dreary industrial town that is trying to emerge from economic downfall. The case morphs into something bigger when it appears to connect with another group of murders that happened earlier. It’s a large cast of suspects and some of it is easy to connect but the underlying motive is more elusive. What distinguishes this story is Decker’s apparent self identity crisis brought on by events associated with his involvement that even had me a bit concerned. He’s also challenged to deal with emotionally charged situations, especially those involving Jamison’s niece, Zoe. Their relationship was truly special, giving us insight into what lies within this complicated man.
I really liked this story, particularly Decker’s inner turmoil. I’m excited to see this character evolve, even if it’s only small steps. The case was compelling and often exciting, especially the climax. The narration duet has finally found its rhythm and it added drama and reality to my reading experience. I love this series and can’t get enough of this unusual character.
(I received an advance copy from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review)