The Wanted

After Devon Connor finds a Rolex, designer clothes and a thick roll of cash in her teenage son's room, she hires Los Angeles private eye Elvis Cole to see what kind of shady business the kid, Tyson, is involved in. Turns out he and two buddies have been burglarizing the rich. Still, it doesn't sound like Elvis's toughest case--until Tyson goes missing and one of his accomplices is murdered. It appears Tyson and his friends stole something from a very powerful person who will stop at nothing to get it back, and it'll take Elvis and his partner, Joe Pike, to prevent Tyson from ending up dead.

With The Wanted, his 17th Elvis Cole novel, Robert Crais proves yet again he's a master of lean, mean storytelling and creating memorable characters. Even people who do very bad things are allowed moments of humanity and vulnerability. The relationships are just as important as the plot--the friendship between the killers somewhat mirrors that between Cole and Pike--and what Crais leaves off the page is as important as what he includes. Cole's cat is famous for his crankiness, but when he senses despair in Cole, he is right there to offer his support in a way both simple and deep. The case involves a McGuffin-like device and becomes almost secondary to the complex characters, but it does receive a satisfying resolution. Cole and Pike fans definitely want to get their hands on this one. --Elyse Dinh-McCrillis, blogger at Pop Culture Nerd

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