Valdo Esposito is a hit man with a gambling problem. In need of cash, he contracts with erratic ATF Agent James Roberts for what turns out to be a gun running operation, but Roberts insists upon controlling every detail of the operation, needlessly complicating what should be a simple crime.
Jonathan Starker is a highly successful graphic novelist who needs to get to Phoenix to speak at a comic book convention, but his fear of flying forces him to find other means of transportation, putting him on a collision course with the gun runners and flinging him into a real-life adventure filled with cliff-hanging predicaments in a strange environment.
In the midst of the chaos, Jonathan encounters gutsy Internet journalist Jessenia “Jesse” Conrad who helps him find his way through the mess, all the while scheming to parlay the inside scoop of their exploits into a blockbuster news story. Complications arise when Jonathan finds himself becoming attracted to Jesse.
In the end, Jonathan must learn to grow up and fight for his life.
Hold your breath for this book will take you on the adventure of a lifetime.
May 28, 2016patfish
It might be a semi-truck wreck, a ride in roaring rapids, scary airplane rides or even riding a skittish horse. Then we have blazing guns, strange government cabals, thugs who shoot on sight and eating rattlesnakes. It all ends on a sweet note, if your nerves can handle it.
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Oh my goodness let me catch my breath.
For I just finished reading “Collateral Crimes” by Jeffrey Yochim and the book….well it took my breath away.
So where to begin?
Valdo Esposito is a hired killer, hired by a mysterious cabal somehow associated with our very own government. In due course an experienced political reader will figure out what’s going on. Agent Roberts is Valdo’s partner though Roberts is involved with this government cabal and despises the thug Valdo.
A comic book action writer, Jonathan Starker, is the protagonist who gets involved in this breathless story as he hitches a ride with Mark, a semi-truck driver who is delivering a cargo to Arizona, said cargo also including Jonathan Starker, who just wanted a ride to an action fantasy convention in Arizona.
Within Mark’s truck was quite an unusual cargo, although Mark did not know what was within, nor did Jonathan. It was after Mark was no longer around that Jonathan had to take over the wheels of the truck and run like the dickens to safety.
And this is the slow part of the narrative.
For Jonathan is a comic book writer. He never drove a semi-truck, a motorcycle, is terrified of airplanes and water, never fired a gun or kissed a girl.
In the faster part of the narrative Jonathan travels through deep back woods, flowing rivers with rapids, motorcycles, semi-trucks that hit trains…..okay….again need to stop and take a breath.
For yon reader, at this point, it should be quite determinable that this is a fast-paced tale of two people desperately trying to convince a world that THE BAD GUYS ARE THE GOOD GUYS!
They picked up their speed, easing their way along the rocks, fighting through fallen tree branches and thick brush. The fire seemed to keep up with them, but at least it wasn’t gaining on them.
They reached a section of the creek where the walls towered above them and there was no ledge to walk on, only deep pools of water to float in.
The sky to the east turned from gray to a sickly black color, lighted with flashes of lightening. Thunder rumbled down the gorge. The air became so thick it was hard to breathe.
Jesse said, “Ah, shit.”
“What’s the matter?”
“It’s raining upstream. We have to get out of the creek before we get caught in a flash flood.”
But of course they got caught in the flash flood for if the truck wasn’t crashing or the guns weren’t firing or the fires weren’t roaring through the forest, of course there will be a flash flood.
Please do not think this is not a love story. It’s not all truck crashes, killings, plotting, scheming, constantly running for one’s life.
If I had a criticism of this book, and it’s small, it would be that while most of the book occurred within one 48 hour period, the book’s ending came months after all the excitement.
Yes it was a lovely ending, emotions were moved.
And the government was knee deep in this thing and just trying to figure out that involvement is mesmerizing.
And figure it out the reader will.
The reader will be shocked.