Justice: The Curtis Chronicles #3
by Joseph Badal
Suspense Publishing

"As much as she wanted to be strong, she couldn’t fight off the fear that seemed to invade her every pore."

Adrenalin flows through the pages of this novel as if it were being sprayed from the mouth of a fire hose. Action, intensity, and suspense rocket from chapter to chapter. The deeper you get into the story, the more the tension mounts. When you finally turn the last page, you’re definitely worn out, but the ride has been more than worth it. Seldom does one get caught up in an adventure that’s as smart as it is stimulating. While this is the third installment in a particular series, it’s no less entertaining if you happened to have missed the first two books. The author does a skillful job of interweaving information from the preceding installments to provide necessary knowledge regarding specific characters' motivations and behavior. You spend little time getting up to speed and more time just going along for the thrill ride—a veritable roller coaster of intersecting mayhem.

Intriguing and diverse characters and plot lines play out simultaneously. Young women are being hoodwinked into human trafficking by Lorca, a depraved villain ensconced in a fortified compound in Nicaragua. A Bulgarian criminal, Tarnovsky, is supplying Lorca with Eastern European women at the same time he’s spying for and assassinating targets of America’s Central Intelligence Agency. An honorable doctor and his wife, Matt and Renee, who previously crossed deadly paths with Lorca (when he was called Lonnie), are targeted for revenge. A United States Senator, Driscoll, is increasing investigative focus on the trafficking operation that threatens to shine too bright a light on the interplay between good guys and bad guys. Soon, Renee is kidnapped by Lorca, and Matt is forced to mount a rescue operation with some of his ex-military buddies. Tarnovsky devises a plan to eliminate Lorca and take over his business. The CIA determines it’s time to sever ties with Tarnovsky, permanently. Before you know it, all hell begins to break loose from one continent to another as an intrepid agent, Parnell, runs into a stone-cold killer, Tatiana, and things get even wilder, woollier, and even more fun. Incredibly, the author manages to keep all of the aforementioned chess pieces moving at warp speed without doing any damage whatsoever to the reader’s comprehension.

Badal is a first-rate writer performing at the top of his game. His character development is nuanced. His depictions of government and military operations are credible. His prose is easy to read swiftly without being simplistic. His dialogue has the bite, bark, and banter of real conversation. He creates harrowing scenes that chill, action sequences that leave you breathless, and moments of intimacy that feel honest and true. Echoes of James Patterson, Nelson DeMille, and Tom Clancy waft through his pages as he zigzags his way through potentially complicated situations, yet the loose ends all get snuggly tied. A prolific writer, Badal has fifteen novels to his credit, some stand-alone and some in series. He’s frequently found on multiple bestselling lists and is often the recipient of prestigious writing awards. This novel should only add to his stature.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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