US Marine Patrick Norris has seen the worst that Afghanistan has to offer–excruciating heat, bitter cold, and death waiting behind every rock as comrades are blown to pieces by bombs and snipers. He returns home not knowing the worst is ahead of him.
The avocado ranch his family has owned for generations in Fallbrook, in the foothills of San Diego, has been destroyed by a massive wildfire and the parents he loves are facing ruin. Patrick’s older brother Ted is drawn into a circle of violent, criminal misfits.
Patrick puts his own plans to become a fishing guide on hold to save the family’s home and falls in love with Iris, a beautiful and unusual woman, when disaster strikes.
A tale of two brothers and overcoming the odds. Maybe Parker’s best and I have to give a shout out to another outstanding Fallbrook mystery writer – Randy Hicks.
11/14 Jack Quick
Patrick Norris was a marine serving in Afghanistan amid the killings, bombings chaos of war and the sight of friends killed and maimed. He is discharged, and returns home to a small town in California near the marine base of Camp Pendleton with a dream of opening his own sport fishing business, catering to a clientele that wants some guidance in fishing for game fish.
Much to his surprise and dismay, he discovers that the avocado tree ranch his family has owned and worked for years, located in the foothills of San Diego, has been destroyed by a wildfire. Consequently his parents are facing ruin in the aftermath of the blaze.
Patrick’s brother Ted is living with the family. He is a gentle, trusting person by nature but tormented by dark thoughts. With Patrick back, Ted falls in with a criminal element as a means of proving himself worthy of his brother’s and parent’s love. Patrick puts his own plans on hold in order to help his parents move through the crisis they face and also attempts to get Ted on a path to normalcy and a full life. He meets and falls in love with Iris in the course of his attempts to help both his parents and his brother.
Parker is known for his many crime novels but makes a major departure with Full Measure. He explores the emotions, thoughts and currents experienced by the characters in the book. When Ted makes some major personal blunders, Patrick goes to his aid with a love only a brother has for a sibling getting himself into major problems. This is not a typical Parker novel, delving into a world of emotions and feelings rather than describing a crime taking place. Well done, and hopefully leading to other books by the versatile Parker straying from the mysteries he is famous for.
10/14 Paul Lane
FULL MEASURE by T. Jefferson Parker. St. Martin’s Press (October 7, 2014). ISBN 978-1250052001. 288p.