The Manhattan Puzzle
Avon, Oct 10, 2013, $12.99
In Manhattan, Lord Bidener observes his euphoric sadistic assistant Xena salivating while torturing BXH security chief Hare. Using a torch on him, Hare begs for mercy before he gives up the international firm’s codes. Once they have what they wanted, vicious Xena slowly guts him.
In London Isabel Ryan worries that her husband Sean failed to come home. When the police demand she tell them where her spouse is as he is linked to a homicide in New York, her concern for his safety goes viral. Isabel fears their work for BXH re the symbol may have left her spouse in peril. Following her instincts to rescue her mate and also break the ancient code, Isabel leaves their four years old son Alek safe with a close friend before flying to New York in search of Sean. Meanwhile Sean, held captive by those who also frame him with murder of Hare, realizes his hosts enjoy inflicting pain on others and will have no compunctions abducting and torturing him or his wife.
The 3rd Ryan Puzzle suspense (see Istanbul Puzzle and The Jerusalem Puzzle) is an exciting over the top of the Empire State Building Brownian thriller. Isobel is a solid lead though her Energizer Bunny stamina seems doubtful even fueled by adrenaline and coffee; while the villains are caricatures of psychopaths.