In this fast-paced historical thriller, the #1 New York Times bestselling author introduces Archer, a WWII veteran forced to investigate a small-town murder -- or risk returning to prison.
It's 1949. When war veteran Aloysius Archer is released from Carderock Prison, he is sent to Poca City on parole with a short list of do's and a much longer list of don'ts: do report regularly to his parole officer, don't go to bars, certainly don't drink alcohol, do get a job -- and don't ever associate with loose women.
The small town quickly proves more complicated and dangerous than Archer's years serving in the war or his time in jail. Within a single night, his search for gainful employment -- and a stiff drink -- leads him to a local bar, where he is hired for what seems like a simple job: to collect a debt owed to a powerful local businessman, Hank Pittleman.
Soon Archer discovers that recovering the debt won't be so easy. The indebted man has a furious grudge against Hank and refuses to pay; Hank's clever mistress has her own designs on Archer; and both Hank and Archer's stern parole officer, Miss Crabtree, are keeping a sharp eye on him.
When a murder takes place right under Archer's nose, police suspicions rise against the ex-convict, and Archer realizes that the crime could send him right back to prison . . . if he doesn't use every skill in his arsenal to track down the real killer.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
In David Baldacci’s first historical mystery, set in the 1940s, the unassuming Southern town of Poca City offers a fresh start for World War II infantry vet turned con man Aloysius Archer. But when Archer gets mixed up with a crooked local businessman, he finds himself caught up in a web of local politics, deceit, and murder—and he’s the prime suspect. Narrator Edoardo Ballerini perfectly captures the vintage hardboiled feel of the story, giving great voices to the small-town tough guys and sultry dames Archer must face down to clear his name. This cracking listen has all the thrills and double crosses of a classic film noir, but with a fresh and exciting hero we’d like to see more of.
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Great story and characters 😎🤠🤪🤩🤯🥶🥵😤😭😱
Not perfect, but still good
It’s not perfect, but it attempts to achieve a balance of complexity and suspense. While the book is not perfect, it’s still relaxing to read.