Thursday, September 15, 2016

Book Review ~ The Last Mile by David Baldacci

The Last Mile
Amos Decker Series, Book 2
by David Baldacci
Paperback: 464 pages
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (September 13, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1455586463
ISBN-13: 978-1455586462

In his #1 New York Times bestseller Memory Man, David Baldacci introduced the extraordinary detective Amos Decker-the man who can forget nothing. Now, Decker returns in a spectacular new thriller
Convicted murderer Melvin Mars is counting down the last hours before his execution--for the violent killing of his parents twenty years earlier--when he's granted an unexpected reprieve. Another man has confessed to the crime.

Amos Decker, newly hired on an FBI special task force, takes an interest in Mars's case after discovering the striking similarities to his own life: Both men were talented football players with promising careers cut short by tragedy. Both men's families were brutally murdered. And in both cases, another suspect came forward, years after the killing, to confess to the crime. A suspect who may or may not have been telling the truth.

The confession has the potential to make Melvin Mars--guilty or not--a free man. Who wants Mars out of prison? And why now?

But when a member of Decker's team disappears, it becomes clear that something much larger--and more sinister--than just one convicted criminal's life hangs in the balance. Decker will need all of his extraordinary brainpower to stop an innocent man from being executed.

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The Last Mile begins with Melvin Mars who is currently on Death Row for supposedly killing his parents.  He has always claimed innocence, but evidence against him proved otherwise.  Twenty years later on the day of his execution, he gets a reprieve as someone else comes forth and confesses that he was in fact the one who killed Mars’ parents. Something just does not seem right though.   Decker wants this case bad because of the similarities between this case and the case of his that has never been solved.  With the help of the FBI, Mars himself, and a special task force, this well-crafted novel provides the reader with an abundance of twists and turns that keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time.

Amos Decker is perhaps the coolest fictional detective ever.  Due to an accident which ended his NFL career, he has a medical condition that enables him to have perfect recall of everything – which comes in pretty handy in his line of work, but is also a curse because he remembers EVERYTHING and let’s face it, sometimes you just want to forget. In addition to his memory thing, he is funny, unique and totally relatable.

Although The Last Mile is book two in the series, I feel as though it can be read as a stand-alone.  But with that being said, I am definitely going to go back and read Memory Man just for the fact that I love Decker and want to learn more about him.

David Baldacci definitely has an awesome talent of drawing the reader in and keeping them guessing until the very end.  The Last Mile has everything I love in a good mystery – highly captivating, fast-paced, well-written, suspenseful, and a cast of well-developed characters that will keep you wanting to know how the story will end.  An intriguing read that you will not want to put down.

4 stars

David Baldacci has been writing since childhood, when his mother gave him a lined notebook in which to write down his stories. (Much later, when David thanked her for being the spark that ignited his writing career, she revealed that she'd given him the notebook to keep him quiet, because "every mom needs a break now and then.") David published his first novel, ABSOLUTE POWER, in 1996. A major motion picture adaptation followed, with Clint Eastwood as its director and star. In total, David has published 32 novels for adults; all have been national and international bestsellers and several have been adapted for film and television. His novels have been translated into more than 45 languages and sold in more than 80 countries; over 110 million copies are in print. David has also published five novels for younger readers.

David received his Bachelor's degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, after which he practiced law in Washington, D.C.

While David is involved with several philanthropic organizations, his greatest efforts are dedicated to his family's Wish You Well Foundation®. Established by David and his wife, Michelle, the Wish You Well Foundation supports family and adult literacy in the United States by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of literacy and educational programs. In 2008 the Foundation partnered with Feeding America to launch Feeding Body & Mind, a program to address the connection between literacy, poverty and hunger. Through Feeding Body & Mind, more than 1 million new and gently used books have been collected and distributed through food banks to families in need.

David and his family live in Virginia.

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