Horns of the Devil by Marc Rainer
ORDER A COPY: Horns of the Devil: A Jeff Trask Legal Thriller
Publishing Date: December 6, 2012
Paperback: 250 Page
Rating: 5 stars
The beheaded body of an ambassador’s son is dumped on the curb in front of his father’s embassy just blocks from the White House. Federal prosecutor Jeff Trask and an FBI task force are called upon to solve the murder. Their search for the killers leads to the MS-13, a hyper-violent gang from El Salvador, but Trask and his team soon learn that someone else is also tracking their suspects, and with deadly efficiency. When Trask himself becomes a target, he realizes that he is caught in a cross-fire between two of the most ruthless organizations in the western hemisphere. Author Marc Rainer brings more than three decades of investigative and prosecutorial experience to this follow-up to his hit novel “Capital Kill.” “Horns of the Devil” provides a view into one of the most deadly organized crime threats facing the United States today, and takes the reader on a gripping ride through murder investigations complicated by Washington politics and international intrigue.
In the thrilling follow up to Capital Kill, former USDA now Officer Timothy Wisniewski is called to investigate a call about a man injured. He certain was. In fact, he has been decapitated. The body is that of the teenaged son of Juan Carlos Lopez-Portillo, the Ambassador from El Salvador. His body was dumped in front of the embassy to leave a message, but the question is what message and from whom?
Soon Det. Dixon Carter Dix, FBI Agent Barry Dorez and USDA Jeff Trask are all heading the new task force to find out who is behind the death of an Ambassador’s son.
All evidence starts pointing toward two very aggressive, rival drug gangs originating from California made up of El Salvadorians, the MS-13 and the M-18, who have each staked out territory in and around D.C. As the body count climbs for both of the gangs, some of the kills start to look too professional for gang hits and the Task Force needs to worry if they are in the middle of an open gang war or there is someone else trying to escalate the gang violence between the two factions, and the need to put a stop to it before the violence spills out into the streets of D.C.
Another great thriller by Marc Rainer. I enjoy this group of characters and the way they work together in their respective departments to solve the case.
We are along for the ride with both the investigators and the killers but just like our investigators until there are enough pieces to put together, we can’t figure out the whys and wherefores of what is happening.
With an author who doesn’t hesitate to harm a character, either major or minor, it keeps you on your toes wondering if the killers might just win this time.
Mixed all together it was an intriguing story with great characters, in real danger and like any good thriller, it kept you guessing until the very end.
If you love a good thriller, I recommend you giving this new author a chance.
Received a review copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.
Lynn Trask drove south on Maryland highway 5 toward Waldorf. She hadn’t really said anything to Jeff before leaving. She had left a short message on his office voicemail, knowing that he’d probably never check it. He’d stay in the task force bullpen or in the conference room until it dawned on him that it was past time to leave. The voicemail would cover her if he bothered to ask. He’d check her cubicle an see that her purse was gone, and then he’d figure it out.
He IS a freakin’ genius, after all. That’s why he’s right 99 percent of the time, and why he was asking questions about Armando’s killer again in front of the squad, even after I’d figured it out. GOD, he pissed me off sometimes always analyzing, re-analyzing. Sometimes I think I married one of those Vulcans from Star Trek. Logic, logic, and more logic, with a memory like a damned computer. When he’s focused on something like this, I can’t break into his hard drive, even when I’m helping input data. I’m right about Armando’s murder, damn it. It all makes too much sense to be wrong. “Can’t afford to assume.” DAMMIT. He might as well have been cross-examining me on the witness stand. It’s not an assumption; it’s a solid inference based on proof.
She stopped at a shopping center when she reached the Saint Charles subdivision. Boo and Nikki were almost out of dog food. She picked up a forty-pound bag of the expensive stuff, and continued the debate with herself as she pushed the cart back to her car.
Calm down. You know he didn’t mean anything personal by asking everyone else about it. He probably agrees with you and doesn’t want it to look like he’s playing favorites. No, he’s really weighing other possibilities and letting the chips fall where they may, even with his own wife. It’s still not personal, though; he’s just doing his job, and the one he’s so good at. That concentration will stay focused until he solves this, then he’ll be human again. GOD, he pissed me off sometimes. He’ll miss dinner fore sure. He can find his own tonight.
She turned into the cul-de-sac marked Amwich Court and pulled into the driveway of the house at he end. Throwing the sack of dog food over her shoulder, she opened the door to the split-foyer entrance and headed downstairs. She filled the bowls and walked to the sliding glass doors, which opened onto the patio in back. She pulled one side open and paused at the screen door, seeing the two happy faces and wagging tails on the other side. She couldn’t help but smile and felt her mood improving.
“Hi, girls. Mama’s home. Ready for dinner?”
The low growl from Boo caught her by surprise.
“What’s the matter, Boo?”
She knew as she asked that she should turn to look behind her, but that realization came too late. A large gloved hand covered her face, and she had time for only one thought before she blacked out.