The Wanted by Robert Crais

‘Harvey and Stemms were making progress, but they couldn’t just blow into the club and flash the picture. The photograph of Unknown Male Subject Number One was dangerous.’

Devon Connor is a single mother, concerned when her teenaged son Tyson suddenly seems to have a lot of money. She’s concerned that he may be dealing drugs, so she contacts private investigator Elvis Cole to see if he can find out what Tyson is up to. Elvis quickly discovers that Tyson, with two others, has been responsible for several burglaries. But Tyson and his friends have stolen something that the owner wants returned at any cost. He’s has employed a team of his own to track down the thieves.

When one of the three is murdered, Tyson and his girlfriend disappear. Will Elvis Cole, with the assistance of Joe Pike, find them before the others do? As Elvis and Joe race to find Devon, they are also trying to find out what was stolen, and to whom it belongs.

‘The window was closing, but not closed.’

While some of the characters seem to be stereotypes (especially the computer geek ‘The Carl’, and the bad guys Harvey and Stemms) they fit into the story perfectly. Bad guys and computer geeks need to be a bit predictable, surely. Especially when there are a number of other layers to the story.

I enjoyed this novel. It is a fast-paced story, and the 17th book in the Elvis Cole series. It isn’t necessary to read the novels in order, each one can be read as a standalone story.

Note: My thanks to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster (Australia) for providing me with a free electronic copy of this book for review purposes.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith