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Vanished

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The New York Times bestselling "master of the modern thriller" (Boston Globe) returns with his most compelling hero — and his most electrifying tale yet. Lauren Heller and her husband, Roger, are out to dinner one night when they’re brutally attacked. Twenty-four hours later, Lauren awakes in the hospital to find that her husband has vanished without a trace. The only one w The New York Times bestselling "master of the modern thriller" (Boston Globe) returns with his most compelling hero — and his most electrifying tale yet. Lauren Heller and her husband, Roger, are out to dinner one night when they’re brutally attacked. Twenty-four hours later, Lauren awakes in the hospital to find that her husband has vanished without a trace. The only one who has any chance of finding him is his brother, Nick, a high-powered investigator with a private intelligence firm. Nick Heller is tough, smart, and stubborn. Trained in the Special Forces, he specializes in digging up secrets that powerful people would rather keep hidden. He and his brother have been estranged ever since the imprisonment of their notorious billionaire father. But Nick will do anything to protect Lauren and her son. He never backs down. Even if it means taking on the most lethal enemies he’s ever had to face. Plunged headlong into a desperate chase, Nick begins making shocking discoveries about his brother's life — and about the giant defense contractor he works for. Now, in order to keep Lauren and her teenage son alive, Nick must take on a powerful and deadly conspiracy that will stop at nothing to protect its secrets. With breathtaking suspense and pulse-pounding action, right down to its final, astonishing twist, here is "the finest of the contemporary thriller novelists" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) at the top of his game.


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The New York Times bestselling "master of the modern thriller" (Boston Globe) returns with his most compelling hero — and his most electrifying tale yet. Lauren Heller and her husband, Roger, are out to dinner one night when they’re brutally attacked. Twenty-four hours later, Lauren awakes in the hospital to find that her husband has vanished without a trace. The only one w The New York Times bestselling "master of the modern thriller" (Boston Globe) returns with his most compelling hero — and his most electrifying tale yet. Lauren Heller and her husband, Roger, are out to dinner one night when they’re brutally attacked. Twenty-four hours later, Lauren awakes in the hospital to find that her husband has vanished without a trace. The only one who has any chance of finding him is his brother, Nick, a high-powered investigator with a private intelligence firm. Nick Heller is tough, smart, and stubborn. Trained in the Special Forces, he specializes in digging up secrets that powerful people would rather keep hidden. He and his brother have been estranged ever since the imprisonment of their notorious billionaire father. But Nick will do anything to protect Lauren and her son. He never backs down. Even if it means taking on the most lethal enemies he’s ever had to face. Plunged headlong into a desperate chase, Nick begins making shocking discoveries about his brother's life — and about the giant defense contractor he works for. Now, in order to keep Lauren and her teenage son alive, Nick must take on a powerful and deadly conspiracy that will stop at nothing to protect its secrets. With breathtaking suspense and pulse-pounding action, right down to its final, astonishing twist, here is "the finest of the contemporary thriller novelists" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) at the top of his game.

30 review for Vanished

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    Joseph Finder has done it again...written another amazing action packed thriller.The first chapter has lots of drama and suspense and sets the tone for the rest of the book. It starts out with Lauren and her husband Roger Heller going out to dinner. As they are walking out of the restaurant, Roger forgets his wallet. He turns to head back into the restaurant, when he hears Lauren call his name. The last thing Lauren remembers before she awakens in a hospital bed is Roger saying “Why her”? Now Ro Joseph Finder has done it again...written another amazing action packed thriller.The first chapter has lots of drama and suspense and sets the tone for the rest of the book. It starts out with Lauren and her husband Roger Heller going out to dinner. As they are walking out of the restaurant, Roger forgets his wallet. He turns to head back into the restaurant, when he hears Lauren call his name. The last thing Lauren remembers before she awakens in a hospital bed is Roger saying “Why her”? Now Roger has disappeared. Lauren calls Nick, Roger’s estranged brother to help her locate her husband. What Nick discovers about Roger blows him away and has him racing all over the place on a wild goose chase to find his brother and reunite him with his family. The truth about what truly happened to Roger will leave you speechless. Mr. Finder is back with his latest thriller, Vanished. I first tried Mr. Finder’s work when I read "Buried Secrets". After that I knew I had to make sure I read more of his books. Vanished is a one sit read….literally! I sat down and started reading this book and before I knew it the time had flown by and I was done. I can say one good thing about Mr. Finder; I always know what I can expect from him…a good story line, good characters, and a nice recommendation from me. I will definately be purchasing more of his books. A definate 5 star rating from me!

  2. 5 out of 5

    D.B. Woodling

    His brother has vanished. His sister-in-law brutally attacked. Larger-than-life Nick Heller wants answers, and he will inflict serious damage to get them. A talented writer, this author possesses the ability to simultaneously engage, educate, and entertain. He fluidly drops in backstory, much like a paratrooper infiltrates a war zone. With Vanished, Finder gives us a complex yet transparent plot involving military contract bribes, a deceptively happy marriage, Special Forces Ops, Defense Contrac His brother has vanished. His sister-in-law brutally attacked. Larger-than-life Nick Heller wants answers, and he will inflict serious damage to get them. A talented writer, this author possesses the ability to simultaneously engage, educate, and entertain. He fluidly drops in backstory, much like a paratrooper infiltrates a war zone. With Vanished, Finder gives us a complex yet transparent plot involving military contract bribes, a deceptively happy marriage, Special Forces Ops, Defense Contractors, an imprisoned father, and a gumshoe detective. Despite the array of clandestine characters and situations, the plot falls flat, the pace agonizingly slow. While it’s apparent, Finder painstakingly researched offshore banking, explosive devices, hand-to-hand combat, and weaponry, one glaring mistake involving the disabling of a surveillance camera is difficult to overlook. Ironically, it’s Finder’s protagonist, who so accurately reveals the novel’s core issue: *“A professional magician once told me that the greatest magic tricks are never, in fact, a single trick at all. They’re always a sequence of tricks, and the true magic lies in how they’re presented.” Vanished has too many tricks, not enough true magic. (Joseph Finder fans may find Suspicion a more satisfying read.) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... *From Vanished by Joseph Finder, pg. 347

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    After eight stand-alone books, and at least to this reader, a steady decline with each subsequent release, this author has started a series with Vanished and has hit rock bottom. The protagonist, Nick Heller, is ex-Army Special Services now working in the private sector. Nick is a very obvious and unfortunately, a very poor caricature of Lee Child’s protagonist Jack Reacher. While Reacher is a loner, Heller works alone - until he needs help. Then he picks up his cell-phone, and much like reaching After eight stand-alone books, and at least to this reader, a steady decline with each subsequent release, this author has started a series with Vanished and has hit rock bottom. The protagonist, Nick Heller, is ex-Army Special Services now working in the private sector. Nick is a very obvious and unfortunately, a very poor caricature of Lee Child’s protagonist Jack Reacher. While Reacher is a loner, Heller works alone - until he needs help. Then he picks up his cell-phone, and much like reaching into a tool-box to find what he needs he dials a number – demolitions expert, computer genius, security expert – they’re all just one phone call away. Heller also has a “biting wit”. A cohort apologizes for waking him with her early morning phone call. Heller responds, “No problem. I had to get up to answer the phone anyway.” There’s a lot more side-splitting zany hilarity like this, but I don’t want to spoil it for you. Heller can also become a one man army when necessary. Up against a Blackwater-like security/military firm, Heller decides to go right to the top and break into the CEO’s isolated secure compound for a one-on-one talk. After a little reconnaissance, (sitting in his truck with binoculars), Heller comes up with a genius plan. He waits until after dark and then plants a few cell phones in the shrubbery. Now here’s where it gets tricky - he then calls the planted phones, their ringing completely befuddles the top notch security guards and Nick waltzes right into the “secure” compound. Again, I could go on with examples of such “intrigue” and “suspense”, but hopefully the point is made. I am just as guilty as the next person when it comes to enjoying a mindless escapist thriller but Vanished falls miserably short even of that categorization. This book makes the old A-Team TV show look complex and complicated in comparison. I haven’t even bothered with the plot – it’s minimal and predictable and simply not worth the effort – Pass on this one and find yourself a good thriller.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    A nice little thriller novel in the category of Ludlum-light. It opens with a brilliant heist of an airplanes contents and the hero of the book gets introduced while he solves the seemingly impossible crime. This first part never will bettered in this book about a generic Ludlum-like hero who investigates his own brothers disappearance and finds trouble on the way to the solution of this novel. The end is not that surprising for the weathered thriller reader. The saving grace of the book is that A nice little thriller novel in the category of Ludlum-light. It opens with a brilliant heist of an airplanes contents and the hero of the book gets introduced while he solves the seemingly impossible crime. This first part never will bettered in this book about a generic Ludlum-like hero who investigates his own brothers disappearance and finds trouble on the way to the solution of this novel. The end is not that surprising for the weathered thriller reader. The saving grace of the book is that it is an easy read and I would categorize it as an excellent read on the beach as it does not taxes your intelligence too much and thus leaves you time observing the other folks on the beach while not being distracted from the story line. An easy and well written thriller that does not outstay his welcome. I would give a 2 1/2 star but due to the opening I will grant it a three star judging.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    I like Joseph Finder's books, but they can be uneven. Some were great, some so- so, but they always have a nice page-turning quality. This was a solid action thriller with a new ongoing character, Nick Heller, who has potential. There were some holes in the complicated plot that were all sort of tied into a nice package at the end. It will be interesting to see if the Heller series gets better. I'd like to see Nick move to Boston from D.C. Finder does his best writing when he really knows the ar I like Joseph Finder's books, but they can be uneven. Some were great, some so- so, but they always have a nice page-turning quality. This was a solid action thriller with a new ongoing character, Nick Heller, who has potential. There were some holes in the complicated plot that were all sort of tied into a nice package at the end. It will be interesting to see if the Heller series gets better. I'd like to see Nick move to Boston from D.C. Finder does his best writing when he really knows the area.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Terence M

    Review later today for 3.0 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Audiobook - 10:38 hours - Narrator: Holter Graham A number of reviewers comment that author Joseph Finder's output is a bit up and down. I agree with this assessment. I have eleven of his works in my audiobook collection and I have listened to four: one earned four stars, two earned three and one was DNF'd. "Vanished" wasn't a remarkable story, but was both gripping and interesting until close to the finish when I have to say I was getting quite confused as to who Review later today for 3.0 ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Audiobook - 10:38 hours - Narrator: Holter Graham A number of reviewers comment that author Joseph Finder's output is a bit up and down. I agree with this assessment. I have eleven of his works in my audiobook collection and I have listened to four: one earned four stars, two earned three and one was DNF'd. "Vanished" wasn't a remarkable story, but was both gripping and interesting until close to the finish when I have to say I was getting quite confused as to who was up whom and who was paying the rent. I am in no hurry to read the next in the series, #2 "Buried Secrets".

  7. 4 out of 5

    Freda Malone

    This was a good heist or financial mystery thriller but I'm finding that I need to be really picky with Joseph Finder books. Sometimes I get a good one that compels me to give it 5 stars and some only 3 or 4. This one was typical, nothing new, common, unordinary. Finder is a great writer, but the stories don't grab me or make my heart beat faster with intensity.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Giovanni Gelati

    Last Sunday, I shared with you a series of novels I thought would make you laugh and cringe at the same time. This week I have a novel for you that have recently been released in paperback, Joseph Finder’s Vanished. To say I am a fan is an understatement. I have read all his novels and always look forward to the next. So, if you wish, click off here, thinking I am a homer, see you tomorrow, maybe. Me being the Yankees fan I was raised to be, always can find something wrong with things in Boston, Last Sunday, I shared with you a series of novels I thought would make you laugh and cringe at the same time. This week I have a novel for you that have recently been released in paperback, Joseph Finder’s Vanished. To say I am a fan is an understatement. I have read all his novels and always look forward to the next. So, if you wish, click off here, thinking I am a homer, see you tomorrow, maybe. Me being the Yankees fan I was raised to be, always can find something wrong with things in Boston,haha. Vanished is an absorbing read. I am consistently amazed by the element of detail that Joseph Finder adds to his novels. It sets him apart from others in the genre and he seems to raise his game with each new novel. The plot line of Vanished has us experiencing the collision of three fractured, damaged people, in a father and his two sons. The force and speed to which Finder narrates the story puts them on a course that would seemingly find them in an atom smasher. I personally enjoyed the whole thing. Reading about a fast moving train wreck and being an innocent bystander isn’t a bad thing when there are no real life fatalities. I am hard pressed to name more than a handful of authors that are in Joseph Finders stratus in this genre. Getting a novel of his that one has not read is truly a pleasure. If you haven’t discovered him for whatever reason, do yourself a favor and pick up any of his many titles. Here are a few: Paranoia, Power Play, Killer Instinct, Company Man, No Hiding Place. I don’t hesitate to say to put them in your Goodreads or Shelfari –to read – lists. FYI- for Finder fans , if you didn’t know, he is one of the contributing authors of a short story to the Agents of Treachery novel that was recently released. You can check our archives for my thoughts on that. Joseph Finder’s newest novel, Buried Secrets, is due out in the spring of 2011, which I look forward to reading. What are you reading today? Check us out and become our friend on Facebook & Linkedin. Go to Goodreads and become our friend there and suggest books for us to read and post on. You can also follow us on Twitter, and the Gelati’s Scoop Facebook Fan Page. Did you know you can shop directly on Amazon by clicking the Gelati’s Store Tab on our blog? Thanks for stopping by today; We will see you tomorrow. Have a great day.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jane Stewart

    Really well done mystery. I was engaged all the way. But the audiobook narrator was annoying. I loved the way Nick and the reader learn things and clues along the way. No tell-all at the end. There were many interesting things, like the way Nick repeatedly set off window alarms to get in a building. I liked what he did with a FedEx envelope. I liked what he did to a key card. I liked how Nick learned something about Roger by what the father accidentally said. Someone compared Nick Heller to Jack R Really well done mystery. I was engaged all the way. But the audiobook narrator was annoying. I loved the way Nick and the reader learn things and clues along the way. No tell-all at the end. There were many interesting things, like the way Nick repeatedly set off window alarms to get in a building. I liked what he did with a FedEx envelope. I liked what he did to a key card. I liked how Nick learned something about Roger by what the father accidentally said. Someone compared Nick Heller to Jack Reacher (by author Lee Child). He was similar in that he took-on three guys at once and beat them in hand-to-hand combat. The Reacher books have more fighting scenes than this book. This book had Nick fighting about twice. That’s not a complaint, just a comparison. Finder might be a little better with plotting. I “require” happy endings. And the ending was good for me. The Nick chapters were 1st person, and then many chapters were 3rd person which was well done. I don’t like 1st person, but if you have to do it, this is the way to go. AUDIOBOOK NARRATOR: Holter Graham. I was annoyed with the narrator using weird voices for Gabe and Lauren (the stepson and wife of the missing guy Roger). He sounded the opposite of constipated. He sounded like he had to go to the bathroom but was holding it in and holding his breath. It was really off-putting. Other characters also had the “holding the breath” feel. In an interview the narrator said he wanted Gabe to have a voice that cracked like many 15-year-old boys. The idea is ok, but the voice ended up being more weird than authentic. Also Graham’s voice for Nick sounded like a college kid instead of an adult ex-military guy. However Graham did have a good general narration style. DATA: Narrative mode: 1st person Nick, 3rd person others. Unabridged audiobook length: 10 hrs and 42 mins. Swearing language: none that I recall. Sexual content: none. Setting: current day mostly Washington D.C. area. Book copyright: 2009. Genre: mystery suspense. OTHER BOOKS: This is book 1 in the Nick Heller series. They do not need to be read in order, but I’d recommend it. For a list of my ratings of other Joseph Finder books see my 5 star review of Paranoia. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

  10. 5 out of 5

    Book Haunt

    Joseph Finder’s Vanished is the first book in the Nick Heller series. Nick Heller is an international investigator working for the high-powered intelligence firm, Stoddard Associates. His current assignment: locate the missing cargo which was part of a shipment belonging to the Traverse Development Group. But when all signs point to the case being wrapped up too tidily, Nick just isn’t buying it. Coinciding with Nick’s case, his estranged brother Roger is kidnapped. Nick’s relationship with his Joseph Finder’s Vanished is the first book in the Nick Heller series. Nick Heller is an international investigator working for the high-powered intelligence firm, Stoddard Associates. His current assignment: locate the missing cargo which was part of a shipment belonging to the Traverse Development Group. But when all signs point to the case being wrapped up too tidily, Nick just isn’t buying it. Coinciding with Nick’s case, his estranged brother Roger is kidnapped. Nick’s relationship with his brother was shattered by their rich father’s highly publicized arrest and imprisonment. But Nick has stayed close to Roger’s stepson Gabe. For Gabe’s sake, Nick has to find Roger and protect his family from further threat. As Nick delves further into the two cases he finds out that his employer may be involved a high-level cover-up and that his brother, Roger has been hiding a few secrets of his own. Nick Heller is an intense and likeable character. Having been a Special Forces operative, he is tough and street savvy. Nick also has a reputation for being able to see around corners. He goes into a case like a dog with a bone and doesn’t give up. He utilizes many of his past connections to help with his investigations and he’s not afraid to step outside the law when necessary. His circle of friends is a handy group to know and the author provides us with some in-depth knowledge of their investigative techniques. In the vein of a fine John Grisham novel, Vanished is a brisk thriller that introduces us to a new hero with a lot of depth. If you are in the mood for good, page-turning escapism, give it a try!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kristin

    Please allow me to emphasize, I read this as an audiobook. Much of my impressions may have been influenced by the narrator - audiobooks are like that. A mediocre book can become stellar by a voice, and stellar book can be tedious. This was a interesting book with a narrator who's voice bugged me, the result of which more often than not I was left sniggering and snickering at the book or banging my fists against the steering wheel in frustration. My main contention was with the female character - Please allow me to emphasize, I read this as an audiobook. Much of my impressions may have been influenced by the narrator - audiobooks are like that. A mediocre book can become stellar by a voice, and stellar book can be tedious. This was a interesting book with a narrator who's voice bugged me, the result of which more often than not I was left sniggering and snickering at the book or banging my fists against the steering wheel in frustration. My main contention was with the female character - Lauren. Classic damsel in distress and just...stupid. Stupid repetitive questions - a tendency to repeat the question being asked back as a question. She was portrayed as being helpless, stupid, and a grade one liar to boot. From the prologue, I despised her as a character which was only compounded by the narrators voice for her and the character grated on my nerves. Add in Lauren's 14 year old son, Gabe, also depicted with a nasally whiny voice, and I was ready to start skipping chapters. I could find no empathy for anyone in the Heller household. The only redeeming factor was the main character Nick Heller, our very human hero. He was portrayed as witty, sarcastic, headstrong, subject to doubts, could be easily mislead and screw things up, but overall a fairly well rounded character. His point of view was the only thing that kept me reading the book instead of tossing my iPod across the room. That and I didn't want to break my iPod. I will probably try book two in the series, as this was book one and sometimes writing and characters need a bit of time to develop. So, Vanished is recommended with reservations.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jerome

    Boring, easy to put down, but less easy to finish. Heller works alone until he needs help. Then he picks up his cell-phone, and much like reaching into a tool-box to find what he needs, dials a number - demolitions expert, computer genius, security expert - they're all one phone call away. Heller can also become a one man army when necessary. Up against a Blackwater-like security/military firm, Heller decides to go right to the top and break into the CEO's isolated secure compound, for a one-on-on Boring, easy to put down, but less easy to finish. Heller works alone until he needs help. Then he picks up his cell-phone, and much like reaching into a tool-box to find what he needs, dials a number - demolitions expert, computer genius, security expert - they're all one phone call away. Heller can also become a one man army when necessary. Up against a Blackwater-like security/military firm, Heller decides to go right to the top and break into the CEO's isolated secure compound, for a one-on-one talk. After a little reconnaissance/surveillance, (sitting in his truck with binoculars), Heller comes up with a genius plan. He waits until after dark and then plants a few cell phones in the shrubbery. Now here's where it gets tricky - he then calls the planted phones, their ringing completely befuddles the top notch security guards and Nick waltzes right into the "secure" compound. Again, I could go on with examples of such "intrigue" and "suspense", but hopefully the point is made. I am just as guilty as the next person when it comes to enjoying a mindless escapist thriller but Vanished falls miserably short even of that categorization. This book makes the old A-Team TV show look complex and complicated in comparison. I haven't even bothered with the plot - it's minimal and predictable and simply not worth the effort - Pass on this one and find yourself a good thriller.

  13. 4 out of 5

    MisterLiberry Head

    No Jack Reacher is this Nick Heller guy, although they bear some superficial similarities and fan-fiction types like to hypothetically match them against each other like Batman v. Superman. Nick is ex-Special Forces, now an investigator with an elite, D.C.-based private intelligence firm that specializes in both digging up secrets and burying them on behalf of powerful people and corporations. He also is rather boring. Nick spends most of VANISHED on an off-the-books mission looking for his brot No Jack Reacher is this Nick Heller guy, although they bear some superficial similarities and fan-fiction types like to hypothetically match them against each other like Batman v. Superman. Nick is ex-Special Forces, now an investigator with an elite, D.C.-based private intelligence firm that specializes in both digging up secrets and burying them on behalf of powerful people and corporations. He also is rather boring. Nick spends most of VANISHED on an off-the-books mission looking for his brother Roger, who vanished after the Georgetown mugging of his wife Lauren. Both brothers have reacted in their own way to the criminality of their billionaire father, Victor Heller, who was busted during their boyhoods. Roger is the “ever-scheming, ever-dissatisfied, megalomaniacal” one looking for “a way out of his middle-class purgatory” (p299). Nick is the one who can take on three thugs unarmed, and win--while working a job that keeps him on the move and helps him avoid self-reflection. The problem with VANISHED is that it never feels real and the main characters don’t quite make it to life. Also, the core mystery driving this “thriller” is without drama and the bad guys are prosaic. One really good cryptic clue is the phrase, “Say good-bye to the librarian” (p74)--which doesn't nearly rise to the level of “Save the cheerleader, save the world.” I won’t be looking for the sequel, BURIED SECRETS (2011)…

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stuart

    Vanished by Joseph Finder: I was unimpressed with this book. It was OK, but, for me, somewhat formulaic. I read a review that encouraged me to read it; a new series by a thriller master. The new series features a Jack Bauer / Jack Ryan type of superhero, called Nick Heller. The story revolves around the brother of the hero who is the “vanished” of the title. At first the brother’s disappearance seems like a kidnapping, but it spirals into something much more complicated, which is a nice plot. Th Vanished by Joseph Finder: I was unimpressed with this book. It was OK, but, for me, somewhat formulaic. I read a review that encouraged me to read it; a new series by a thriller master. The new series features a Jack Bauer / Jack Ryan type of superhero, called Nick Heller. The story revolves around the brother of the hero who is the “vanished” of the title. At first the brother’s disappearance seems like a kidnapping, but it spirals into something much more complicated, which is a nice plot. The story is fast-paced, and very easy to read, but, as you’ll have noticed from my other reviews, I don’t like supermen - those people who can do anything, and if they can’t, they know someone who can. It was a good train / airplane read, but I won’t be seeking out the second one in the series, though. Bring me everyman. Three stars out of five.

  15. 4 out of 5

    William Ramsay

    Another thriller. I keep saying I don't generally read this sort of book and now I know why. I bought Vanished because I liked Finder's earlier book, Paranoid. Paranoid was original and fast moving with a hero I could relate to. Vanished is contrived and conceived, I think on a white board like so many TV shows. The main characters are super heroes or arch villains. This whole mess was a vast disappointment. This is why I generally avoid vest selling thrillers. I have to move on to something mor Another thriller. I keep saying I don't generally read this sort of book and now I know why. I bought Vanished because I liked Finder's earlier book, Paranoid. Paranoid was original and fast moving with a hero I could relate to. Vanished is contrived and conceived, I think on a white board like so many TV shows. The main characters are super heroes or arch villains. This whole mess was a vast disappointment. This is why I generally avoid vest selling thrillers. I have to move on to something more serious.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Skip

    A husband/father disappears: kidnapping or staged? Nick Heller, ex-Special Forces, now private security firm employee is called by his distraught nephew to find his estranged brother. Corporate intrigue. (Not as good as his other books.)

  17. 4 out of 5

    Judy

    Whoopee! I've found a new author with a protagonist I like and can follow through the series. I like Finder's writing and find the characters real. An exciting plot. What more can I say!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    An OK read, but it never quite captured me.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mahoghani 23

    Amazing and full of all the necessary requirements to keep me entertained. This is a book about greed, scandal, politics, family, deceit, and money. Roger Heller has had a taste of the good life while growing up but his father's illegal activities caused them to lose it all. He will stop and nothing to regain his seat on the throne. Roger's younger brother, Nick, is an honest man who served time in the military and now investigates companies for irregular activities , fraud, theft...You name it. R Amazing and full of all the necessary requirements to keep me entertained. This is a book about greed, scandal, politics, family, deceit, and money. Roger Heller has had a taste of the good life while growing up but his father's illegal activities caused them to lose it all. He will stop and nothing to regain his seat on the throne. Roger's younger brother, Nick, is an honest man who served time in the military and now investigates companies for irregular activities , fraud, theft...You name it. Roger, with the help of his wife, devises a scheme that could get everyone killed. Roger's son, Gabe, contacts Nick to locate his dad. What Nick finds is a trail of deception, lies, murder, and greed. Good book and I hope the other in the series are just as good.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Pierre Tassé

    This is not the typical book for me. I am more covert ops etc. Having said that, there is a lot to be said for the way that Joseph Finder writes and how the chapters are crisp and keep you reading and interested in how the story line develops. I had some of the story figured out but there are always twists and turns and that is what makes a good writer. I have already reserved Buried Secrets (Nick Heller #2)-which tells you I found the book worth the read.

  21. 4 out of 5

    gert

    (same review for both books in the series, copied and pasted. because i'm lazy). i read mostly romance, but am finding myself completely bored with most. so i sought out my other favourite books - suspense-ish. i came upon the nick heller series by accident, and am seriously resenting there being only TWO books! so damn good! here's what you need to know: - similar to jack reacher, but better. nick heller has a great sense of humour and is far more self-aware then dear jack. - way smart - the story (same review for both books in the series, copied and pasted. because i'm lazy). i read mostly romance, but am finding myself completely bored with most. so i sought out my other favourite books - suspense-ish. i came upon the nick heller series by accident, and am seriously resenting there being only TWO books! so damn good! here's what you need to know: - similar to jack reacher, but better. nick heller has a great sense of humour and is far more self-aware then dear jack. - way smart - the story arcs, the characters, the dialogue - leaves us with some questions throughout (nick doesn't tell us EVERYTHING) which actually makes for more interesting reading. - he's not a spy, not a soldier, not a private investigator, not a killer. he falls under all those categories, but doesn't fit neatly into any single one. the first book was better then the second, but only marginally. and that may be totally subjective - i enjoyed the family aspect of the first book (nick's family) which improved my vote. would i recommend? hells yeah. hop to it. the only negative i have (and it actually almost stopped me from purchasing) is the high cost of these books. amazon kindle was the least expensive, but still more then i like paying for an ebook. and since they're SO dang good, i read straight through until finishing. which means i spent about $15 each for an afternoon. but frankly, after the crap i've been reading of late - worth the price.

  22. 5 out of 5

    D.K.

    Joseph Finder did follow the hero rulebook with the creation of Nick Heller: Special Forces background (check) Troubled childhood (check) Has trouble with authority (check) Can punch his way out of a situation (check) Loner (check) Cracks cynical jokes when a pistol is pointed at his face (check) Tough guy with a good heart (check) What sets Nick Heller apart from the others is that Finder places him in a business environment (Heller is a corporate investigator). Heller isn’t fighting against a corrupt Joseph Finder did follow the hero rulebook with the creation of Nick Heller: Special Forces background (check) Troubled childhood (check) Has trouble with authority (check) Can punch his way out of a situation (check) Loner (check) Cracks cynical jokes when a pistol is pointed at his face (check) Tough guy with a good heart (check) What sets Nick Heller apart from the others is that Finder places him in a business environment (Heller is a corporate investigator). Heller isn’t fighting against a corrupt politician with his own personal agenda or terrorists groups whose goals are to tear down the government. No, Nick Heller isn’t scuffling with Bob the accountant, tossing paperclips at each other in the break room either--that would have been boring. Heller does face off with well-trained, well-armed private security personnel and must locate the individuals responsible for the abduction his older brother. There’s plenty of action, suspense, good humor and mystery to satisfy everyone. The book is a quick read and Heller is a likable character. I’m looking forward to reading the further adventures of Nick Heller.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Arapahoe Libraries

    One of my favorite corporate intrigue thrillers has long been Paranoia, and I'm terribly excited to tell you that this best selling author has done it again! In his new book, Mr. Finder introduces Nick Heller, an elite corporate intelligence specialist and former Special Services extraordinaire! In California, Nick receives a frantic phone call from his fourteen year old nephew begging him to come to Washington D. C. immediately as his father has vanished without a trace, and his mother is in a c One of my favorite corporate intrigue thrillers has long been Paranoia, and I'm terribly excited to tell you that this best selling author has done it again! In his new book, Mr. Finder introduces Nick Heller, an elite corporate intelligence specialist and former Special Services extraordinaire! In California, Nick receives a frantic phone call from his fourteen year old nephew begging him to come to Washington D. C. immediately as his father has vanished without a trace, and his mother is in a coma. Despite the brothers estrangement that began with their father's much publicized securities fraud conviction years earlier, Nick rushes to protect his nephew and sister-in–law, and to solve the mystery of his brother's abduction. This action packed, super charged novel is a great read, but even more, it is a high stakes, intelligent look behind the scenes in the upper echelons of Washington and the world. Jump aboard this roller coaster ride, and enjoy the thrills.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Bernie Charbonneau

    This was a very good thriller novel. Mr. Finder introduces us for the first time to Nick Heller, former American Special Forces soldier. Unlike some of the other novels that I have read with these type of special training characters, Mr. Finder, for me, has made his character more realistic. By this I mean that Heller is not portraid as this super hero, larger-than-life fighting machine. The plot was well developed with enough twists in which, when you thought you had it figured out, nope, wrong This was a very good thriller novel. Mr. Finder introduces us for the first time to Nick Heller, former American Special Forces soldier. Unlike some of the other novels that I have read with these type of special training characters, Mr. Finder, for me, has made his character more realistic. By this I mean that Heller is not portraid as this super hero, larger-than-life fighting machine. The plot was well developed with enough twists in which, when you thought you had it figured out, nope, wrong. Everything which happened through the novel was quite nicely tied in with no seeming rush to end the book. Looking forward to more books with "Nick Heller"

  25. 4 out of 5

    Chris Callahan

    The vanished person premise for a plot is a little shopworn, but the author makes it work pretty well in this story about intrigue in the financial sector featuring a "Jack Reacher-lite" protagonist. On the plus side, the book is an easy read, it held my interest in the story, had some clever twists and good characters. I thought that the events towards the very end of the book were a bit of a letdown and that there were a few plot threads that were never resolved (perhaps that will happen in su The vanished person premise for a plot is a little shopworn, but the author makes it work pretty well in this story about intrigue in the financial sector featuring a "Jack Reacher-lite" protagonist. On the plus side, the book is an easy read, it held my interest in the story, had some clever twists and good characters. I thought that the events towards the very end of the book were a bit of a letdown and that there were a few plot threads that were never resolved (perhaps that will happen in subsequent entries in this series). I'd say this is a good beach read for thriller fans, entertaining, but not too taxing.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jeanette (Again)

    Really, 3 1/2 stars Good, fast, exciting read. As Charisse said, there is some predictability. Sometimes it's transparent that he's setting something up to use later in the story. But the writing is good enough that it doesn't come across as cheezy. Reminds me somewhat of Linwood Barclay, but Finder's a little more sophisticated. He's a former intelligence officer, so he's got that inside knowledge on which to draw. I enjoyed the slightly sardonic humor, especially from the Nick Heller character.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    Solid and engaging thriller that involves a dangerous web of political deceit and corporate greed in Washington, DC, with the bad guys part of a Halliburton-type of company. A man skilled in military intelligence from a Special Forces background gets enaged to solve the apparent kidnapping of his brother, whom he despises but works to find out of concern for his sister-in-law and nephew. Lots of exciting twists and turns without resorting to too much excessive violence.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Sylvia

    This is the first book I’ve read by this author and it’s in my favorite genre, Murder-Mystery. The story revolves around the assault of Lauren Heller and the disappearance of her husband Roger. Roger’s brother, Nick Heller, unravels the mystery and takes us through the shadow world of quasi government contractors and consultants. Nick is a former Special Services operative who now works for a private risk management firm which makes him especially suited to investigate what happened to his broth This is the first book I’ve read by this author and it’s in my favorite genre, Murder-Mystery. The story revolves around the assault of Lauren Heller and the disappearance of her husband Roger. Roger’s brother, Nick Heller, unravels the mystery and takes us through the shadow world of quasi government contractors and consultants. Nick is a former Special Services operative who now works for a private risk management firm which makes him especially suited to investigate what happened to his brother and sister-in-law. I found the authors detailing of the intricate web of current government agencies and officials entangled with former government officials who work as suppliers of information and goods more eye opening than the revelation of whodunit. Overall, the book is well paced and an interesting read.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    Good and Valuable Consideration written by Lee Child and Joseph Finder is what pointed me to the Nick Heller series, so I had a ex-Special Forces ass kicker in mind when I picked up this book and didn't fully get it. I would label this book as a Mystery but a Mystery Thriller is stretch it. Not saying there isn't excitement in the book but maybe not enough to make the book an easy read. I'm hoping it's just because it's a interdiction book and he had to get a lot of character building out of the Good and Valuable Consideration written by Lee Child and Joseph Finder is what pointed me to the Nick Heller series, so I had a ex-Special Forces ass kicker in mind when I picked up this book and didn't fully get it. I would label this book as a Mystery but a Mystery Thriller is stretch it. Not saying there isn't excitement in the book but maybe not enough to make the book an easy read. I'm hoping it's just because it's a interdiction book and he had to get a lot of character building out of the way, with that in mind I'll read the next and see.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Rob Cook

    I read the fourth book in this series first and enjoyed it enough to want to start from the beginning. I liked this book and Heller is a fun character. I thought some of the situations were a bit hard to swallow (how many times can you sneak into a high end security company and steal stuff?) But overall it was a good story and I'll be back for more.

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