Then Go Straight Forward by Bill Johnstone
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Bill Johnstone's Then Go Straight Forward begins with the shooting of two apparently innocent tourists on vacation in northern Florida and a fire in a wealthy neighbourhood of Washington, DC. Two seemingly unconnected incidents that prove to be strands in a mysterious pattern involving organized crime, a children’s charity, the clergy and a dead security agent. The incidents trigger an investigation by journalist Mike McCabe of White Collar Option whose news instincts determine he follows the clues to the bitter end.
The book opens with McCabe, a newpaper investigative journalist, looking for a way to document the death of a young woman who was involved in the investigation of a fatal car crash. Said young woman was in protective custody at the time of her murder, thanks to a bullet shot through her window.
Then there was the fire where a young Hispanic man was found and rescued by a firefighter. There was something not quite right with the way the fire burned and this prompted a police investigation. In comes Homicide Detective Lt. Pat Kovarik. His investigation leads him to a Jesuit priest Father Jack Trent and eventually to a children's charity hopelessly embroiled in the illegal traffic of Hispanic babies.
It is a convoluted story that can be hard to read at times but also very hard to put down. The seemingly unrelated events unravel into a remarkable story that can engross a reader before they even knew it.
Bill Johnstone's writing style can be difficult at times as the details of the story are slowly exposed. Do not let the slow pace fool you though. Once all is brought out, only then will the reader finally get the why's and the how's and then start to wonder how it would all pan out.
Then Go Straight Forward is a well written suspense thriller complete with all the angst of human nature, no matter what their religion may be. It is a revealing story of how human needs and wants can sometimes blind people to the point of ignoring all else, even those they know are wrong, immoral and illegal.
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