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Book Review: Agent X by Noah Boyd

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Kate Bannon, FBI agent is having one of her worst nightmares ever. She feels like she is dying. As she pries open her eyelids, she realizes there is no dream, only real life. Someone has left her car running, and she is breathing in fumes, unable to open her garage, which is jammed. In the back of her mind she realizes that this will look like suicide instead of what it really is. Who is it that is responsible for her attempted murder?

In the hospital, Bob Lasker, Director of the FBI, is cautiously waiting for her to wake. He has questions only she can answer. Unlike the others, he does not believe the evidence. Kate needs to find out who is after her and why. It is time for her to call Steve Vail for help. Steve has always been at his best in these situations, and she has always been able to rely on him. Will he help her this time? Never one to follow the rules he has left the business and is now pursuing his own way as Bricklayer. Growing up in his father’s footsteps, it was what he was groomed for. A rule breaker, not a rule taker, he chose to leave the business.

Kate is not sure he will help, and if he does, can she keep him within the guidelines required by her Director? With only one man believing her story, will Vail also understand that she is in danger, not from herself but from others? When Steve agrees to help, digging into the deceit behind her most recent problems, the evidence takes them into the dark and dangerous underground of the spy network. Whom do they trust, in this political game of tag?

In Agent X, Noah Boyd has built a layer of deceit that only the best minds could follow. Nevertheless, as each clue is unraveled the bad guys are murdered before they can be debriefed. Steve and his trusty companion Kate follow the trail, to find the deep undercover spy and unmask him, but at each turn, the adversary is ahead of them. While close and having a great respect for the other they both work off differing agendas, neither trusting the other with all their information.

Kate believes in Steve, but not all the information adds up when the ousted spies die, many at the hands of Steve himself. Is he only in the wrong place at the wrong time as he claims — or is he responsible for the deaths? She is vulnerable without the entire backing of her crew. Whom does she believe when the evidence points in varying directions? She is strong and smart, but what is really happening? Can she take a leap of faith and follow her heart, or will she follow the advice and evidence as presented?

Steve is secretive and has his own agenda. He is extraordinarily bright when it comes to seeing the big picture, but he struggles with putting his faith in others. He is adept and cocky, going his own way, using the information he garners to flesh out further spies, and information. But who is guiding him with bits and pieces of clues, leading him into fray after fray, only to murder the suspects before they have a chance of digging out the truth. Steve is the quintessential MacGyver with just a bit of Mack Bolen thrown in. Boyd has written a fine, fast paced and intriguing suspense, keeping you guessing. Just who are the bad guys, and will Kate make the right choices?

I would recommend this book to those who enjoy fast-paced adventure, set in a spy thriller. Vail is a wonderful character and sure to be one to bring back time after time. The moniker of Bricklayer helps to flesh out his persona, both solid and well-constructed with strength of character. This is an exciting novel with strength of purpose and hard to put down. It is action and adventure at its finest, a thrilling ride.

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About Leslie Wright

Leslie Wright is an author and blogger in the Northwest.
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