It all begins on a Monday, when four people board an elevator in a Manhattan office tower. Each presses a button for their floor, but the elevator proceeds, non-stop, to the top. Once there, it stops for a few seconds, and then plummets.
Right to the bottom of the shaft.
It appears to be a horrific, random tragedy. But then, on Tuesday, it happens again, in a different Manhattan skyscraper. And when Wednesday brings yet another high-rise catastrophe, one of the most vertical cities in the world – and the nation’s capital of media, finance, and entertainment – is plunged into chaos.
Clearly, this is anything but random. This is a cold, calculated bid to terrorize the city. And it’s working. Fearing for their lives, thousands of men and women working in offices across the city refuse leave their homes. Commerce has slowed to a trickle. Emergency calls to the top floors of apartment buildings go unanswered.
Who is behind this? What do these deadly acts of sabotage have to do with the fingerless body found on the High Line? Two seasoned New York detectives and a straight-shooting journalist must race against time to find the answers . . .
First of all I probably should say that I have now read all of Linwood’s books and am an old fan so you’re never going to see a bad review from me, that said, if you want a fast moving yet character based thriller look no further than a Linwood Barclay book!
The first few pages, as often does with this author’s books, grabs the readers interest from the get go! Within just the prologue we witness the death of seemingly unrelated members of the public plunged to their death in a freak elevator accident. As the story unfurls and as we are introduced to the the various characters in the novel other buildings witness elevator accidents. Are they linked? Are they planned? Is this an act of terrorism?
Based in New York which is known as The Vertical City due to the large number of high rise buildings and therefore the number of elevators, members of the public and The Major of New York, Richard Headley, become increasingly concerned.
With current issues of terrorism, radical groups and the rich/poor divide of America running through this book it makes for a truly believable and alarming tale.
The book has a great pace linking the plot, characters and political/social elements together wonderfully, keeping my interest at all times. Intriguing side stories like those of the journalist and the detective had me racing through this wanting to know what could possibly happen next. Subtle clues are interspersed throughout the story and are all there for the reader to find yet as always there is still a wonderful twist at the end tying up any lose threads perfectly.
What makes Linwood Barclay’s novel so readable apart from the great plot lines are his characters. They are so realistic, just ordinary people you might meet everyday suddenly plunged into extraordinary situations. We learn of their backstory as the novel moves along and this in turn allows the reader to see how these characters are linked to the plot. This another great read from this author and goes to show he really is a master of thriller writers.
The author is appearing at a number of locations both in the UK and the USA to promote this new novel so check out his web page or find him on Twitter for more details.
I received a proof copy of this book at The Theakston Crime Festival.