Reviews for Black friday : a Maggie O'Dell novel

Publishers Weekly
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Bestseller Kava's superb Maggie O'Dell thriller (after Exposed) features a particularly memorable villain, the Project Manager (aka Robert Asante), the third party behind 1995's horrifying Oklahoma City bombing, along with real-life terrorists Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols. Now Asante has directed an attack on Minnesota's Mall of America during Black Friday, the big retailing day after Thanksgiving, that kills 32 people, including two students who were duped into carrying devices that they believed would just create an electronic blackout. FBI profiler O'Dell, still recovering from the death of her boss, must work with her new superior, hypercritical Raymond Kunze, as well as her ex-boyfriend, security consultant Nick Morrelli, to prevent a second major terrorist outrage Asante has planned to follow shortly after the first. Kava peppers the breathless action with enough intel to make the premise scarily real. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Thousands of people swarm through the various shops at the Mall of America on the day after Thanksgiving, so the casualties are high when a series of explosions roars through the complex. FBI profiler Maggie O'Dell receives the call to assist, creating a further strain on her family's tense holiday get-together. The footage from surveillance videos at the shopping center reveals three young people with backpacks as the likely terrorists. The further O'Dell investigates, however, the more suspicious she becomes. Is there a puppet master responsible for manipulating the dead suspects? Then she learns that the prime suspect is her stepbrother and that, in all likelihood, there is a secondary target. Chaos reigns in this chilling page-turner. Kava brings back characters from previous novels, making this necessary reading for fans, but he also gives enough backstory to grip newcomers who enjoy romantic suspense in the style of Tami Hoag and Iris Johansen.--Ayers, Jeff Copyright 2009 Booklist

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A deadly blast at the Mall of America kicks off the seventh case for FBI profiler Maggie O'Dell (The Soul Catcher, 2002, etc.). Dixon Lee thinks the backpacks he and two college buddies have been given to carry into America's largest shopping mall contain electronic circuitry that will jam computer systems and disrupt mercantile commerce on the day after Thanksgiving. The disruption Dixon and his old friend Rebecca Cory miraculously survive actually involves explosives, dozens of dead bodies and a zero-tolerance policy toward unwitting accomplices. Even as Dixon and Rebecca are doing their best to elude a sinister paramedic who wants them dead, the powers that be are bombarding the mall with crime-solving experts. Maggie and her new FBI boss, petty brute Ray Kunze, fly in from D.C. along with Charlie Wurth of Homeland Security. Maggie's ex-suitor Nick Morrelli, now with United Allied Security, interrupts his holiday weekend to review the mall's tapes. Meanwhile, Dixon's grandfather, retired business mogul Henry Lee, sweats to protect his grandson while negotiating with the self-anointed "Project Manager" who planted bombs on the protestors and now plans a second act of post-Thanksgiving terrorism. Kava handles the initial bombing and the ensuing chaos with authority. But as she unwinds layer upon layer of intrigue, much of it involving partisan infighting among politicians and bureaucrats who are supposed to be on the same side, she cuts so rapidly among her cast members, all of them with urgent agendas they're convinced are at the center or the universe, that you may begin to feel as disoriented as if you were stuck in the Mall of America the day after Thanksgiving. By the time she's finished linking the fictional terrorist plot to the real-life Oklahoma City bombing, you may wonder exactly who the baddest bad guys are. A thriller that tails off from its most thrilling scene in chapter one and never makes up its mind what it's most scared of. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.