The Last Detective by Robert Crais
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
When his girlfriend's son is kidnapped right out from under his nose, Elvis Cole goes into overdrive to find him. Ben's kidnappers seem to be tied to Elvis's past as a Ranger in Vietnam, forcing Elvis to relive his early days. Can Elvis and Joe find Ben before the kidnappers kill him?
Crais keeps the momentum going from L.A. Requiem and once again, Elvis and Joe wind up in the soup. Instead of Pike, The Last Detective focuses on Elvis' past, from never knowing his father to his "free spirited" mother to his days in Vietnam. His relationship with Lucy is further strained and he runs on fumes trying to get Ben back. I felt like LA Requiem was Joe Pike's defining book and The Last Detective does much the same for Elvis.
Crais did a good job with the supporting cast, as per usual. Lucy Chenier's husband Richard has been a douche since he was introduced and he takes it to new heights in The Last Detective. Carol Starkey, the main character of Demolition Angel, is in charge of the investigation, making me wish I'd read that book before this one. However, the villains of the piece were among the worst yet. When Joe Pike admits to being scared, you know things are pretty bad.
Speaking of Joe Pike, his aura of invincibility is gone after LA Requiem and he knows it. I'll be interested in seeing him recover in the next couple books.
That's about all I have to say. Elvis and Joe are outgunned but still manage to come through. Changes rock the supporting cast that will affect the series for books to come. I've got no complaints.
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