MYSTERY

Into the Fire

Minotaur: St. Martin’s. (Orphan X, Bk. 5). Jan. 2020. 400p. ISBN 9781250120458. $27.99. THRILLER
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Hurwitz’s fifth “Orphan X” adventure (Out of the Dark) finds former assassin Evan Smoak using his deadly skills to assist Max Merriweather, a guy down on his luck, whose cousin’s murder has brought him to the attention of an Armenian street gang involved in a money-laundering scheme. It seems like an easy enough task for the Nowhere Man, but as soon as he eliminates one threat, a more powerful one appears, and getting to the top of the pyramid requires courage, wit, creativity, and a lot of specialty weapons. But along bombast and weaponry, there’s plenty of hope, tenderness, and even humor throughout this story. Series fans will appreciate the growing friendship between Evan and teenage hacker Joey, whose sarcasm and sloppiness serve as an excellent foil to the behavior of the earnest, meticulous hero. Even though the ending posits that Evan is retiring his vigilante identity, a cliff-hanger suggests that the series will continue along a new and exciting path.
VERDICT Another exceptional installment in the “Orphan X” series, full of action, excitement, and adventure. A must-read for thriller fans. [See Prepub Alert, 7/8/19.]

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