Rip Crew

Mulholland: Little, Brown. Mar. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780316505536. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780316505505. THRILLER
OrangeReviewStarFormer U.S. Border Patrol agent Valentine Pescatore traverses diverse locales, cultures, and personal challenges in this sequel to Triple Crossing. The title refers to gangs who ruthlessly pillage human merchandise from other human traffickers. When one such crew mercilessly executes ten African women in a motel on the Mexico-U.S. border for no apparent reason, Pescatore's investigation unveils ties between these shootings and a powerful conglomerate led by business scion Perry Blake. Discovering that two of the abducted women have escaped the massacre, Valentine tracks down Eritrean refugee Abrihet Anbessa, a witness holding damning evidence against the Blake Group. Moving from the Guatemala-Mexico border to Washington, DC, and then to Italy and La Jolla, CA, Pescatore's relentless campaign to find Anbessa and expose Blake concludes with several unexpected twists.
VERDICT Gritty dialog rings convincingly with authenticity as Rotella playfully inspects multiple layers of meaning inherent in dialects, news stories, and eyewitness accounts. For fans of tough crime fiction in the tradition of T. Jefferson Parker.
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