Douglas Corleone is mainly known for his legal capers featuring Kevin Corvelli. He moves into a much more sobering world in As Good As Gone. The thriller firmly establishes his new hero, Simon Fisk.
Fisk is a hero both highly capable and haunted. A former US Marshall, he lost his wife to suicide after their daughter was abducted and murdered. He now specializes in the retrieval of children from their noncustodial parents, particularly when they are in foreign countries.
This kind of work can get him in trouble with the law. When it does in Paris, the authorities offer him a way out. Lindsay Sorkin, a young American girl, has been taken. So her parents won’t go to the media, the authorities offer them Fisk’s services. This puts him in the very position he avoids, one where he could find a dead child.
The job has him running across Europe. With Lindsay’s father involved in defense work, the stakes get higher as he moves through Germany, Poland, Russia, and others. One of the fun novelties of the book is how Fisk has a sidekick for practically every country including, a lovely lawyer and a brutal and hilarious German, Osterman.
Corleone has skillfully crossed the commercial thriller with a rough and tumble PI novel. It has a thriller’s wonderful forward momentum with a driven hero for an engine. Fisk could be a larger than life character, but the wounds Corleone gives him bring him down to human scale. He knows many of the mean streets of the foreign locales he visits, giving us glimpses of the seedy world of child pornography and even the after effects of the Chernobyl disaster.
With Good As Gone, Corleone sets the tone for what promises to be a great series. I’m already looking forward to the next Simon Fisk novel. He’s a character that can go anywhere geographically and emotionally. Douglas Corleone has proven to be one hell of a guide.
Copies of Good as Gone are available on our shelves and via bookpeople.com.