By Joseph Finder (compact disc audiobook)
The setting for Joseph Finder’s latest corporate thriller is a very remote Canadian fishing lodge decked out with all the fine amenities, with the exception of cell phones or BlackBerry devices.
Cheryl Tobin, CEO of Hammond Aerospace, and the company’s top brass gather there for a company retreat for “team-building” exercises. Cheryl was named CEO when the former CEO dropped dead of a heart attack. Needless to say, Hammond’s other executives are deeply resentful of Cheryl’s appointment.
A few days before the retreat, a competitor’s newly designed plane crashes at a Paris air show, resulting in millions of dollars in contracts for Hammond’s new jet. Vice-president Michael Zorn sends his assistant, Jake Landry, to the retreat in his place. Jake feels more than a little out of place among the executives sporting Rolex watches and bragging about their wealth. Complicating matters further, his ex-girlfriend, Ali Hillman, who is the CEO’s assistant, is also on the trip.
As the company leaders sit down to dinner on the first night, a group of hunters armed with military weapons take over the compound. It turns out that their plan is to hold Hammond’s finest for a huge ransom. But there are questions — how did they know that Hammond’s top brass would be gathered at this remote location? Did someone inside the organization provide this information and if so, what is the motive?
The author alludes to Jake Landry’s dark background in flashbacks throughout the novel. Jake is the only one who has the skills that it takes to outwit the hunters and keep everyone from getting killed.
“Power Play,” a suspenseful story with a strong plot, memorable characters and fast-paced action, is definitely an edge-of-your seat thriller. Dennis Boutsikaris does an excellent job as narrator for this audiobook.
By Keith Ablow (compact disc audiobook)
Frank Clevenger, a forensic psychiatrist who is a consultant to the Boston Police Department, is asked by the police to determine whether a famous inventor has committed suicide or if he was murdered.
The victim, Dr. John Snow, was to undergo experimental surgery only an hour before he was found in an alley close to the hospital where the surgery was to be performed. Snow’s decision to undergo the brain surgery would radically change his life forever. Complications from this groundbreaking brain surgery included possible blindness, deafness, death and most certainly the inability to remember any of the people close to him. His neurosurgeon, Dr. Jet Heller, was eager to make a name for himself by performing this revolutionary new surgery.
Snow had been a brilliant aerospace engineering inventor who suffered from a rare form of epilepsy from the age of 10. His grand mal seizures became more intense as he focused on his inventions. Despite this handicap, Snow’s professional career had been amazingly successful. Snow’s latest endeavor involved a secret military invention. Snow had wealth, family, and beautiful mistress — everything a man could desire, so was this a murder or a suicide?
When another body is found that is related to Snow, Clevenger suddenly has two deaths to investigate and also wonders if this second death was a murder or a suicide. If Snow was murdered, everyone in his small circle, including his family members, becomes a suspect. Clevenger works hard to get inside the heads of the people he interviews.
“Murder Suicide” is a complex novel of psychological suspense. I enjoyed the characterization and the author’s insights as to why people behave the way they do. In addition to writing, Ablow is a forensic psychiatrist who has testified as an expert in some of the nation’s most highly publicized trials.
Both novels are also available in the regular print edition at the Joplin Public Library.
Phyllis Seesengood is the technical services librarian at Joplin Public Library.
- Globe Life
Prototype of a drying rack for Stars of Hope earns award, emotional response
Michael Moritz, Travis Coffee and Kenneth Paylor had no idea that an assignment for their senior design class at Missouri Southern State University would win an award or the emotional gratitude from a service organization.
Ryan Richardson: Groups give tips for preventing dog bites
When I was a teenager in the '90s I had an unfortunate incident with my neighbor's dog, a Brittany, that I had grown up with. It took a chunk out of my thigh when I went into the neighbors' yard to retrieve a ball.
Frankie Meyer: Information is only as good as its source
Those details later become crucial as contradictory information is found, which it will be. How can one decide which detail is correct if the sources of the details are unknown?
Jeana Gockley: Library lines up reading club books
The Joplin Public Library's annual Summer Reading Club kicks off on Tuesday, May 28, so in preparation for a great summer of reading, I have been digging for titles that fit with this year's "Dig Into Reading" theme.
Frankie Meyer: Prepare for holiday visits to cemeteries
Memorial Day weekend is the ideal time to not only decorate the graves of loved ones, but also learn the location of unmarked graves -- and learn about relatives who are buried nearby. That weekend is also a great time to contact living relatives.
Patty Crane: Mystery series should appeal to Reacher fans
In the novel "Taken" by Robert Crais, a bajadores is a predator that kidnaps people being smuggled into the country. The bajadores, the Syrian, demands ransom from families of the people he kidnaps. His ransom demands are low, and as long as the families pay, the demands continue.
Ryan Richardson: Harness works better than a leash
This is the time of year to take your dog outside to enjoy the weather. You both get exercise, you bond more, and it gives you an opportunity to work together as a team. I take my dog out as much as I can, and my dog is happy to see other dogs when we go on walks.
Mutual admiration: Academic Team members thank teachers for inspiration, drive
Members of The Joplin Globe's All-Area Academic Excellence Team thanked teachers for inspiring them to push themselves during a recognition banquet Monday at Missouri Southern State University.
Linda Cannon: Book covers subtleties' effects on humans
I'm always a sucker for books on what makes people tick, so I grabbed "Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces that Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave" by Adam Alter as soon as I saw it. Alter holds a Ph.D. in applied psychology from Princeton and is an assistant professor at NYU.
Frankie Meyer: Old home sites treasures to discover
We genealogists do a similar activity as part of our research. The treasures that we seek are old home sites. Instead of using GPS coordinates, we use clues such as the presence of rusted metal, cellar holes and vintage plants.
- More Globe Life Headlines
- Prototype of a drying rack for Stars of Hope earns award, emotional response