Chris Pavone’s first novel, The Expats, set the stage for his second and now his third book. The stories involve Americans whose working lives in some way involve residing or traveling overseas.
Will Rhodes is recently married and somewhat insolvent, gets a job as a travel writer for the prestigious magazine, “The Traveler.” His work is to travel all over the world and write attractive articles about the food in different areas he visits in order to attract a well to do clientele that subscribe to the magazine – and are also probable clients for a series of travel agencies that have been set up by the publication.
One night he meets a very attractive woman in Argentina wine country and in spite of his being married, starts an affair. It seems that she wants to entrap him via a blackmail scheme into accepting an offer he can’t refuse.
At her orders, he travels all over Europe from France to Ireland onto a mega yacht and to an isolated cabin on the rugged cliffs of Iceland. Will is drawn further and further into a web of intrigue with connections to a gigantic global conspiracy.
The people closest to him, including his new wife, all seem to be involved in the conspiracy and may prove to be the greatest threats to him. The ending is not telegraphed but becomes the only weak area in a novel that is compelling. It would almost appear as if Pavone just came to a point that he thought would be a logical ending and he proceeded to do just that – end it.
3/16 Paul Lane
THE TRAVELERS by Chris Pavone. Crown (March 8, 2016). ISBN 978-0385348485. 448p.