Wild Card
by Woods, Stuart

"Stone Barrington clashes with a determined adversary in the latest non-stop thriller from #1 New York Times-bestselling author Stuart Woods. Stone Barrington and his latest paramour are enjoying a peaceful country retreat when their idyll is broken by an unwelcome stranger. He was sent by an enemy, someone who'd be happy to silence Stone and all his collaborators for good. only it's soon clear that Stone is not an easy man to target. But with boundless resources and a thirst for vengeance, this foe will not be deterred, and when one plot fails another materializes. Their latest plan is more ambitious and subtle than any they've tried before, and the consequences could remake the nation. With the country's future in the balance, Stone will need to muster all his savvy and daring to defeat this rival once and for all."-

Bullet-proof millionaire Stone Barrington and his latest companion, Jamie Cox, lie low at several of Barrington's Continental estates while evading the hit men hired to take them both out. Award-winning journalist Cox is expanding her New York Times exposť of the H. Thomas & Son Investment Bank. The Thomas family was not pleased with the coverage. Nor with Barrington for his role in rooting out their unscrupulous business practices. Cox, Barrington, and several of their pals are now on the family's hit list and use the many resources at their disposal to avoid getting hit. In addition to trying to kill rich lawyers, the H. Thomas crew are funding the campaign of Florida Senator Joe Box (Turbulence, 2018). Bringing Box back helps build anticipation for forthcoming books that follow series sweetheart Holly Barker in her race for the Oval Office. Fans of Barrington and his entourage will enjoy another installment in a series where price is no object for the hero when it comes to solving crimes and satisfying his material needs. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

As if to prove that the relative success of Stone Barrington's most recent thriller (A Delicate Touch, 2018) was a fluke, Woods drags back the surviving baddies for a limp sequel that proves mainly that enough is enough. The case against Rance Damien, horribly scarred but not killed by the fire that resulted when Stone's techie, Bob Cantor, blew up the control center of the nefarious H. Thomas & Sons Bank, has fallen apart because all the incriminating records of Damien and bank patriarch Henry Thomas' malfeasance were destroyed in the blaze. So Damien's out of jail and intent on getting revenge against Stone. It's a fool's errand, as any one of the dozens of criminal masterminds who've tried to kill the cop-turned-lawyer-turned-conspicuous consumer could have warned him, because the professional killers hired to eliminate him will always miss whatever they aim at, often killing someone else instead and leaving their target "peacefully in the knowledge that neither of the two men shot in the ass was himself." The stakes are raised, though the tension isn't increased an iota, when Thomas and Damien decide to back the presidential campaign of Florida Republican Sen. Joseph Box, whose likely opponent is Secretary of State Holly Barker, one of Stone's bevy of ex-lovers. Overnight Box begins to talk like less of a blooming idiot thanks to the ministrations of Harvard-trained speechwriter Ari Kramer. As if he's not smarting enough already, Damien soon learns that Thomas' secretary Elise Grant, getting wind of her bosses' murderous schemes, defects to Stone, whose current inamorata, New York Times reporter Jamie Cox, publishes a blistering takedown of H. Thomas & Sons just as they're about to be acquired by an equally conscience-free hedge fund. Will this be the time that Stone and his team finally go too far? Of course it won't. Despite more complications than a 12-month pregnancy, there's less suspense here than in a three-minute egg. Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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