Review: The Sentryby Robert Crais
Orion, €16.99, Hardback
Former LAPD detective and all-round tough guy Joe Pike is in a Mobil gas station putting air in the tyres of his gleaming red jeep when he notices two young Mexican gangsters entering a sandwich shop across the road.
Sensing the gang bangers spell trouble, Pike crosses the road and stops the two viciously beating up the shop's owner. Pike's act of random chivalry brings him headfirst into the less than wonderful world of Hurricane Katrina refugees Wilson Fisk and his "niece" Dru Rayne, who run the shop. Fisk and Rayne turn out not to be exactly what they say they are.
As trouble for the New Orleans pair escalates, they disappear; and Pike, who has fallen head over heels for Dru; and his buddy Elvis Cole, the self-proclaimed 'world's greatest detective', find themselves in conflict with a ruthless South American drugs cartel boss and his amoral minions; rogue federal agents; a smooth-talking well educated and violent LA gang boss; and Daniel, one of the creepiest killers to have appeared between book covers in years.
Pike, an avenging angel who sides with the righteous, has emerged from earlier walk-on roles in Robert Crais' bestselling Elvis Cole PI series to take centre stage, to the delight of hardcore crime fiction fans everywhere.