If you enjoy high octane suspense thrillers, "The Nowhere Man: An Orphan X Novel" should not be missed, especially if you are a fan of the first book, "Orphan X", by Gregg Hurwitz. I read a lot of suspense and thriller offerings but this one stood out for the sheer white knuckle, "can't put it down" excitement it engenders in the reader. The suspense and sense of helplessness is heightened by a tight plot and a villain as evil as any you might find in today's thriller genre.
Evan Smoak is Orphan X, now known as the "Nowhere Man" who helps the powerless and abused to escape their oppressors, if they are lucky enough to have been given the secret phone number of the Nowhere Man. Evan was taken from a group home at the age of twelve and trained to be an elite assassin as part of an off-the-books black ops program known as the "Orphan Program". Having had enough, Evan walked away from the program only to be mercilessly hunted by the remaining orphans who still work for a shadowy government figure. But Evan is always a step ahead due to his incredible survival skills in computers, killing, disappearing off the grid, etc.
But unexpectedly, Smoak is captured by a well trained team, drugged, and taken to a secret location where he soon finds himself at the mercy of a greedy killer (Rene) and a pack of thugs that just seems endless. Not knowing who he really is and thinking Evan is helpless, Rene tries to coerce him into transferring his entire secret bank account to Rene. Thus, much of the book is a chronicle of Evan's attempts to stay alive, keep his money, and escape from Rene's clutches. The suspense and threats are magnified when the Orphan leaders discover where Evan is being held and agents are sent to terminate him. The suspense ratchets up almost page by page as Evan attempts various schemes to escape and/or kill his captors before the Orphans arrive. I was truly glued to the narrative for the continuing battle of wits between Evan and Rene.
"The Nowhere Man: An Orphan X Novel" is well plotted with great characterizations, and a sense of "being there" that is both foreboding and forbidding. There is incredible violence, to be sure, but that aspect is outweighed by the battle of wits between the protagonists and the self analyzing Evan encounters as he seeks to escape so he can continue to help others. If you read "Orphan X" and liked it or if you are a fan of the action/suspense thriller genre, be sure to grab this one. It is a quick, white knuckler that will satisfy most readers.
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