Title: Wake the Devil by Robert Daniels
Sturgis and Kale Series Book Two
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Seven months after their last encounter, retired FBI agent Jack Kale and Atlanta Police Detective Beth Sturgis are reunited by a new case that pits them against the Sandman, a nearly perfect assassin who leaves no clues, can change his appearance seemingly at will, and has eluded police on four continents for years.
Now, it’s a race against time to protect the Sandman’s next targets–two witnesses scheduled to testify before a grand jury by the end of the week. With the clock ticking down, Kale and Sturgis dive headfirst into a desperate chase to catch the killer before he strikes and disappears again.
Just as he thought he was finally safe, Kale must one again battle the demons lurking in the corners of his mind to take on an all-too-real new nightmare in Wake the Devil, the second in Robert Daniels’s thrilling series.
The second installment in Robert Daniels’ Sturgis and Kale series, Wake the Devil is another fast-paced and perplexing mystery that is full of shocking twists and turns.
Atlanta Police Detective Beth Sturgis and retired FBI agent Jack Kale team up once again to find a hired assassin dubbed “the Sandman” after a trio of Atlanta doctors are targeted in the days leading up to their Grand Jury testimony against suspected terrorist Sergei Borov. With one of the witnesses dead, the FBI are called in to hopefully capture the Sandman before he murders the two remaining witnesses. Working alongside Beth’s partner, Dan Pappas, newly promoted FBI Deputy Director Janet Newton and Special Agent Todd Milner, Beth and Jack manage to foil several of the Sandman’s plots to kill the doctors but he still manages to elude capture time and again. With the body count quickly rising, Beth makes some impulsive decisions that endanger her life while Jack continues to battle the demons that led to his early retirement from the FBI. Under intense pressure from Attorney General Carmine Donofrio, Jack and Beth are in a race against time as they try to catch the Sandman before he strikes again.
Jack is a brilliant investigator with a degree in psychology who has an uncanny ability to take seemingly innocuous details and piece together a perpetrator’s next move. In this current case, there is very little information to go on despite the Sandman’s prolific career but Jack closely studies the Sandman’s previous crimes in hopes of anticipating his next move. While he is sometimes able to accurately predict what he will most likely do next and prevent him from killing the witnesses, Jack remains frustrated by their inability to capture the coldhearted killer. With the Grand Jury date looming and a slightly uncooperative witness to protect, Jack’s investigation is hindered by his anxiety attacks and concern for Beth’s safety.
With seven months of experience under her belt and some specialized training from Jack, Beth has turned into a formidable detective. She is still a trifle impetuous but with so much at stake, it is very difficult to fault her for her sometimes iffy decisions. Coming face to face with the Sandman on two separate occasions, Beth is perplexed that he let her escape unscathed. Information she and Jack uncover about his possible identity provides a plausible reason for his seemingly inexplicable decision to let her live and they also begin to predict some of his future plans for attack. Growing increasingly worried for the witnesses’ safety, Beth takes unnecessary risks in hopes they will catch the Sandman before he can carry out his vicious plot to silence them.
The Sandman is a clever strategist who goes to extreme lengths in order to carry out the assassinations he has been hired to perform. With seemingly endless resources at his fingertips, he has successfully carried out numerous jobs and avoided capture for several years. Several agencies have compiled very little information about the hired killer but with fresh eyes looking at his previous cases and the new evidence from the current investigation, authorities are close to identifying him. Will he manage to carry out his latest hits and escape before Jack and Beth discover the truth?
Wake the Devil is a top-notch police procedural that has a dizzying array of nefarious schemes that keep the storyline moving at a brisk pace. Beth and Jack are more than capable of outmaneuvering their devious foe but will interagency squabbling distract them from the unraveling the various threads of their latest mystery before it is too late? Robert Daniels pits the crime fighting duo against a seemingly unstoppable assassin who is more than willing to kill anyone who gets in his way. Incredibly exciting plot twists and shocking revelations bring the novel to a dynamite conclusion that will stun readers and leave them eagerly awaiting the next installment in the Sturgis and Kale series.