According to the FBI, in 2005 three masked men stole over 7 million dollars that was headed for the Federal Reserve from the Miami International Airport. Grippando took that idea and ran with it.
Ruban, half Russian, half Cuban, has lost his home and his business, so when the opportunity comes up to settle the score, so to speak, with the banking industry, he is on board. Unfortunately, his co-conspirators are a motley crew; his brother-in-law, Jeffrey, is a cocaine addict, his wife’s uncle Pinky is a career criminal with a penchant for violence, and Marco, their inside man at airport security, seems to have vanished.
The heist goes off without a hitch but before the dust settles, everyone is after the money, from local criminals to the FBI. Ruban manages to keep one step ahead but his wife is suspicious, his cohorts are seriously hampering his efforts, dropping thousands of dollars all over Miami, and then the kidnappings start; following the money is the only way to go.
Grippando brings back the caper in this fast paced and violent tale with a cameo by his series hero, Jack Swyteck.
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6/15 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
Grippando sets up what is really a prequel to his books about Jack Swyteck an attorney working in Miami. Andie Henning, who will become Swyteck’s girlfriend and later his fiancee and eventually his wife is transferred to Miami from Seattle. She is a new member of the FBI and has evolved a liking for undercover work. Her first major assignment is to work on a theft of several million dollars in cash. The cash is part of a weekly shipment from Germany that is sent to the Federal Reserve bank. Ruban Betancourt, happily married, and apparently not mixed up in shady business, has his home and his restaurant business seized by his bank to satisfy past due debts. While Ruban has generally played by the rules he comes up with a scheme to get back at the banks, and make a lot of money doing it. He sets up a well planned theft of a part of the cash that has been shipped in from Germany. With the help of his brother-in-law and two ex cons he executes the theft getting away with about 7.4 million dollars. The four begin by agreeing to bury the money for a period allowing the heat from the robbery to die down.
Grippando is a master of following the parties involved in the heist, from the thieves and Andie Henning who gets on their trail and also the mob learning about the theft and wanting to get their hands on the money. Cause follows effect and each of the three parts involved are followed and logically contribute to the plot, it’s resolution. Obviously not all of the four involved with the job is satisfied with keeping their hands off the money while immediate desires are unfulfilled. And Andie understands that in order to get the robbers the best way to act is to follow the trail of the money.
Satisfying read with good plot and explanations of how all parties react to what is going on. The ending is logical, following the details outlined in the novel, and without divulging something totally unexpected it ends with Andie about to meet Jack Swyteck.
06/15 Paul Lane
CASH LANDING by James Grippando. Harper (June 2, 2015). ISBN 978-0062295453. 384p.