From the publisher:
Atlee Pine Thrillers, Book 3
FBI Agent Atlee Pine’s search for her sister Mercy clashes with military investigator John Puller’s high-stakes case, leading them both deep into a global conspiracy — from which neither of them will escape unscathed.
For many long years, Atlee Pine was tormented by uncertainty after her twin sister, Mercy, was abducted at the age of six and never seen again. Now, just as Atlee is pressured to end her investigation into Mercy’s disappearance, she finally gets her most promising breakthrough yet: the identity of her sister’s kidnapper, Ito Vincenzo.
With time running out, Atlee and her assistant Carol Blum race to Vincenzo’s last known location in Trenton, New Jersey — and unknowingly stumble straight into John Puller’s case, blowing his arrest during a drug ring investigation involving a military installation.
Stunningly, Pine and Puller’s joint investigation uncovers a connection between Vincenzo’s family and a breathtaking scheme that strikes at the very heart of global democracy. Peeling back the layers of deceit, lies and cover-ups, Atlee finally discovers the truth about what happened to Mercy. And that truth will shock Pine to her very core.
In my long and pleasant experience reading novels written by David Baldacci, I have never come upon one that doesn’t capture the attention of the reader at the incept of the book. Nor one that disappoints with a badly conceived plot. “Daylight” continues this practice which makes the first recommendation I have is to get some coffee ready, get comfortable, and be prepared to read until finished.
Two of the author’s main protagonists are combined in a conspiracy that reaches to the very pinnacle of the U.S. government, overseas, and throughout the 50 states. Atlee Pine is an FBI agent with years of experience and considered by her supervisors as a crack operator. She is assigned to an office in the interior section of the 48 contiguous states, but with permission, and to continue work on her cases has traveled far afield. As a 6-year-old she was subjected to the trauma of her parents being killed, and her twin sister Mercy being kidnapped. It has been 30 years since last seeing her sibling and at the opening of the novel, she requests a few days to investigate Mercy’s possible whereabouts and of course, if she is still alive.
John Puller is a member of the U.S. Army and is an active military investigator. He has been working on an investigation of a case involving illegal practices at a large army base located in New Jersey. Not too strangely Atlee has come to New Jersey to pick up on the possible whereabouts of her missing sister and she and John Puller find that there are common factors in both of their investigations. They decide to pool their resources and in doing so come upon a conspiracy involving highly placed officials of the U.S. government, as well as many extremely wealthy and influential men and women. It is realized by both Puller and Pine that the arrangement if made public would shake the very foundations of the nation. The first intimation is made when Puller calls upon a contact of his for help, a highly placed member of the military chiefs of staff, and finds that the man has been suddenly transferred out of his post at the Pentagon with only one day’s notice. This action signals that the conspiracy has reached a level that would be at the very apex of the U.S. government.
The action is constant for both Atlee and Puller. They can be hurt and require recuperation time showing that they are human and not supermen. Baldacci easily pulls his readers into empathy for both. Pine is anguished into finding out if her missing sister is alive and where she is if so. Puller causes a problem for his brother who was asked to help with some fact-finding. John is human in worrying about him when he loses contact and fears for his safety. An excellent and engrossing read and another milestone in the literary career of David Baldacci.
12/2020 Paul Lane
DAYLIGHT by David Baldacci. Grand Central Publishing (November 17, 2020). ISBN: 978-1538761694. 416 pages.