Format Read: Kindle book
Source: the author in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: May 9, 2014
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | Barnes & Noble
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Blurb from goodreads:
From the bestselling author of the Dominic Grey series comes a new novel that is part legal thriller, part paranormal mystery, and 100% dark and riveting suspense . . .
Rising above a hardscrabble childhood to become a star at one of Atlanta’s most prestigious law firms, Derek Miller is reliving The Great Gatsby in his own backyard. The spell is broken, however, when Derek’s investigation into the death of his mentor, a prominent psychologist, runs afoul of a mysterious government project involving research into psychic phenomena.
As Derek digs deeper, convinced his mentor was murdered, he is plunged into a rabbit hole of government experiments, clandestine figures, and supposed paranormal events. His investigation also puts him at odds with shadowy forces deep within the corridors of power -- including those on the top floor of his own law firm.
With his career in shambles, a warrant out for his arrest, and his life in jeopardy, Derek is running out of time to unravel the secrets surrounding his mentor’s research. And if he fails, it’s not just his own life that will be at risk, but the lives of those he holds most dear.
From a theoretical physicist to a clairvoyant housewife to the charismatic pastor of a mega-church, from lavish Southern mansions to desperate urban wasteland, Derek’s investigation turns into a race for survival that hinges on one thing alone: finding, and stopping, the most powerful psychic the world has ever seen.
This is the fourth book by Layton that I've read and he just gets better and better. I was excited when he emailed and asked if I was interested in reviewing. Layton writes tense, insightful, thrilling mysteries that deal with the paranormal, the occult, and questions of faith, belief, and the human capacity for good and evil. They aren't quick or easy reads, as they're mysteries with depth. Layton makes you think.
This book also makes you think as Layton tackles death, grief, revenge, what is science, paranormal phenomena, racism, classism, and touches on poverty all wrapped in a thriller that takes place over an extended period of time but never slacks. Layton still has difficulty writing strong believable women who are more than decorative or just a love interest but he made some progress with that in this book. Both Cameron and Gemma are love interests and not as well developed as the main character Derek but both have more depth and purpose to the story than women in Layton's previous novels.
I've seen some reviews that compare Layton to Dan Brown and while on the surface there are similarities, Brown is lemon meringue and Layton is roast beef; Layton has more depth and better characterization. The story is strong and gripping, with secondary characters who are mostly well-fleshed out if a bit stereotypical, and keeps you guessing until the end as to how it will end.