Monday, November 9, 2009

Alex Kava - Black Friday (Maggie O'Dell series, Book 7)

On the busiest shopping day of the year, some idealistic college students believe they're about to carry out an elaborate media stunt at the largest mall in America.
They think the jamming devices in their backpacks will disrupt stores' computer systems, causing delays and chaos. What they don't realize is that instead of jamming devices, their backpacks are stuffed with explosives, ready to be detonated by remote control and turning them into suicide bombers.

Caught up in a political nightmare, battling a new interim director and still mourning the death of her boss A. D. Cunningham, FBI profiler Maggie O'Dell must put her own troubles aside and fly to Minnesota to help figure out what's behind this terrorist attack - a massacre that is all the more frightening because no group has claimed responsibility.

The search becomes personal when a tip reveals that one of the college students involved is Patrick, Maggie's brother. Afraid and on the run, Patrick must decide if he can finally trust Maggie enough to help her unravel this horrifying nightmare.

Sifting through the debris for answers, Maggie is joined by Nick Morelli, who has recently taken a job with a national security company that over sees security for the mall. Although Maggie and Nick have investigated several cases together in the past, they've never investigated a relationship with each other. Nick would like to change that.

When an informant confides in Maggie that there are other attacks on the secret agenda, she knows that she's running out of time. In less than twenty-four hours she'll need to figure out exactly when and where the second attack will take place, who to look for and how to keep her brother from becoming one of the casualties.


Pandemonium after several explosives, placed in Americas biggest shopping mall, explode on the busiest business day of the year: Black Friday.
The mall filled with happy shoppers and a few unsuspecting teenagers out for a prank, the explosives cost the lives of the teenagers and nearby shoppers.

What looks like an unclaimed terrorist attack brings Maggie O'Dell to Minnesota, hurried to come up with a profile by reviewing the malls security tapes.
Once again working with Nick Morelli she has to learn through the TV that one of the teenage suspects is her half-brother Patrick, whom she met for the first time not long ago.

An informant reveals that the mastermind behind the game seems to have a different agenda than the usually non threatening group that initially planned the jamming prank. It seems that the mastermind is one not unknown to the FBI: John Doe #2 from the Oklahoma Bombings.


Black Friday is a quick and easy read for all who love the series and those that pick up one of Kava's books for the first time.
Although not too descriptive in the malls destruction Kava clearly paints a picture of destruction and death in the readers mind that won't be forgotten soon.
The story however has its weak points in structure, especially when it comes the mastermind behind the game.

Relationship-wise it is still a bit stale what goes on between Maggie and Nick. This time around Kava sets Nick in a bad light before, hopefully or not, at one point in future books that the character of Nick isn't really necessary for a Maggie O'Dell novel. It did seem in past books and in he current novel that Nick, besides his strong involvement in Exposed, participates more like a bystander than one of the main characters.

Eventually his character has become unnecessary.

Visit Alex Kava.

Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Mira; First Edition first Printing edition (October 1, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0778326519
ISBN-13: 978-0778326519

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