Turn-of-the-century Detective Isaac Bell takes on the upstart leader of a vicious crime organization in this novel in the #1 New York Times–bestselling series.
It is 1906, and in New York City, the Italian crime group known as the Black Hand is on a spree: kidnapping, extortion, arson. They like to take the oldest tricks and add dynamite. When a coalition of the Black Hand’s victims hire out the Van Dorn agency to protect their businesses, their reputations, and their families, Detective Isaac Bell forms a crack squad and begins scouring the city for clues. And then he spots a familiar face.
The stakes grow ever-higher, with the Black Hand becoming more ambitious, and their targets more political. If Bell can’t determine the role played by the face from his past, the next life lost could be one of the most powerful men in the nation.
Set in 1906, bestseller Cussler's thrilling ninth Isaac Bell adventure (after 2015's The Assassin, also coauthored with Scott) pits Bell, an operative in the Van Dorn Detective Agency, against Antonio Branco, who's outwardly a respectable New York City businessman but is in fact a ruthless crime boss. Branco is willing to bribe and murder to enhance his profits, and he does both to land a contract to "provision the biggest construction job in America." Bell has his hands full working to thwart the Black Hand in New York City, a gang that exploits poor Italians and rich alike, and which benefits from the inadequate resources of the NYPD. But he gets even busier when he learns that a member of a "secret tycoon club," who fears Teddy Roosevelt will learn that he illegally profited from the Panama Canal Treaty, wants the president dead. The fascinating and suspenseful plot compensates for thin characterizations.