VERY BAD MEN by Harry Dolan [Review]

Harry Dolan introduced readers to the enigmatic magazine editor David Loogan in Bad Things Happen. Loogan returns in Very Bad Men, now having settled down in Ann Arbor, Michigan with police Detective Elizabeth Waishkey. They are living the quiet life until they are drawn into an investigation that involves a bank robbery that took place seventeen years ago. It starts when David finds a manuscript outside the Gray Streets offices and realizes it’s not fiction, but a real account of several murders. While the identity of the author is a mystery to David and Elizabeth, the reader is immediately introduced to the murderer, Anthony Lark. He has a hit list of men to kill—all of which were involved in the infamous Sault Sainte Marie bank robbery. But who is this disturbed man and why is he targeting the men on his list?

David and Elizabeth’s investigation takes them from Ann Arbor to Northern Michigan, and they meet a cast of interesting characters along the way. There’s an ambitious tabloid reporter, a retiring United States senator and his hopeful replacement/daughter-in-law, as well as his calculating adviser. The fun part is trying to figure out how all these characters are involved in the case and what secrets they are hiding.

While I really liked Bad Things Happen, I absolutely LOVED Very Bad Men (no worries if you haven’t read the first book, Very Bad Men is a standalone novel). There’s much more action in Very Bad Men and it’s one of those books you just can’t put down. It’s full of thrilling twists and turns that make it impossible to predict what will happen. David Loogan is a very appealing character and it’s hard not to like him. He manages to be confident and gutsy without being a jerk. Smart and witty, yet not pretentious. In fact, he’s a pretty darn perfect protagonist. Elizabeth and her teenage daughter Sarah are well developed characters as well.

I highly recommend Very Bad Men to any mystery reader, especially fans of Michael Connelly. I’m looking forward to reading more from Harry Dolan.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars | Publisher: Amy Einhorn Books | Pages: 432 | Source: Publisher | Buy on Amazon

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