Friday, September 9, 2011

Killer Move - Michael Marshall

Michael Marshall's latest book Killer Move opens with a newly released con named Hunter seeking payback for a crime he says he didn't commit.

We then meet realtor Bill Moore, a man with a five year plan - increasing his  condo sales numbers in the Florida keys, opening up his own realty office, rubbing shoulders with the movers and shakers in his corner of the world. Problem is - it's year six. But Bill is nothing if not upbeat. It will happen.. he just has to work a little harder at it.

Small things start to happen - a card with nothing but a single word - Modified -  is left on his desk. A book from Amazon that he can't remember ordering, a prime table at a restaurant he doesn't recall making a reservation for. Then it starts to escalate - he discovers compromising photos on his computer, conveniently stored in a folder labelled Modified. And suddenly that very simple word takes on ominous overtones. Because someone is playing a game with Bill's life....

What a great premise - an everyday guy with no idea who or why someone would mess with him. Bill's desperate attempts to stop his life spiralling out of control are alternated with Hunter's steps to exact retaliation.

Bill tells his story from a first person narrative, which I have to admit I found increasingly annoying in the first few chapters. It took quite a few chapters beyond the prologue for me to become invested in the book. Bill's thoughts on his father and his philosophy on selling were tiresome. The plot is inventive and plausible, but some of the 'moves' were a bit over the top. The ending was somewhat disappointing, referencing a previous book by Marshall as an explanation for what has gone on.

That being said, I think Marshall has come up with a great idea. How much of our lives are controlled by passwords and online access? How secure are they? How much would it take someone to start games with our lives? A good read, but not great for me. Linwood Barclay does it better.

Read an excerpt of Killer Move. Or listen to an excerpt of Killer Move. You can find Marshall on Twitter.


bermudaonion said...

I'll have to remember that this starts out slow if I get the chance to read it.

Pam (@iwriteinbooks) said...

Interesting. I know people who love the newage thriller stuff but I haven't been brave enough to really get into it, yet.

Unknown said...

I just got this book myself and am looking forward to reading it.