In Buried Secrets, the second in Joseph Finder‘s Nick Heller series, Nick Heller has opened up a private eye/spy shop in Boston, where he has history, and is immediately summoned by family friend and billionaire financier Marshall Marcus to find his missing teenaged daughter, Alexa. As Nick, who has had experience with Alexa before, investigates her kidnapping from a swanky nightclub he quickly realizes that the kidnapping is a professional job, and that her family and friends are being less than honest about what they know of the situation.
I listened to Finder’s Paranoia on audio last year, but I wasn’t aware of the Heller series until I was on Twitter and a tweet about Heller’s Angels caught my attention. Obviously Nick Heller has a fan club. Even though this book is the second in a series, it was easy to get into and understand Nick’s backstory – how he got into the business, his terrible relationship with his father and the effect that it had on him and his mother, and a former failed relationship (which he gets to revisit during the course of this case). Nick is fully characterized and readers get a sense of him right away. He is smart, skilled, resourceful and ballsy, but not so egotistical or infallible as to make him completely unbelievable or unappealing.
Thoroughly explained and possible, some of the twists and turns seem less than probable, though it in no way made for a less hair-raising or suspenseful read. Tension mounts beautifully throughout the book until it becomes almost palpable when it’s revealed just how precarious is Alexa’s situation. A page-turner until the very end, those enjoying action packed mystery/thrillers will find this a satisfying and enjoyable read. Recommended.