STARRED REVIEW
March 07, 2017

Pure adrenaline in search for kidnapped kids

By Brad Parks

There’s plenty that can be said about Brad Parks’ new novel, Say Nothing, and most of it good. From the opening chapter, Say Nothing drops the hammer down on its main character, Federal Judge Scott Sampson, and doesn’t let up until the suspense-filled finish.

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There’s plenty that can be said about Brad Parks’ new novel, Say Nothing, and most of it good. From the opening chapter, Say Nothing drops the hammer down on its main character, Federal Judge Scott Sampson, and doesn’t let up until the suspense-filled finish.

Part domestic thriller, part legal thriller, Scott’s story begins when his world is rocked by the discovery that his 6-year-old twins, Sam and Emma, are missing. Scott and his wife, Alison, receive a chilling phone call stating the children have been kidnapped; if they want to see them alive again they’ll do exactly as told and “say nothing.” Any hint of police involvement will result in dire consequences for the children, possibly even death.

As a judge, Scott correctly surmises the kidnapping has something to do with influencing an upcoming case in his court. But with dozens of cases on his docket, determining which case is anyone’s guess. In the meantime, Scott must carry on as if nothing has happened, anxiously awaiting word from the kidnappers that may come at a moment’s notice. And when it does, he is immediately thrust into a moral dilemma concerning a decision that goes against his judicial convictions. As Scott strives to determine who could be behind the kidnapping, no one, not even Alison, is completely above suspicion.

The only author to have won the Shamus, Nero and Lefty Awards—three of crime fiction’s most prestigious prizes—Parks easily pulls readers along for the ride with crisp, sharp prose that puts us firmly in the head of his protagonist. The very real reactions of Scott and his wife to the shock of possibly losing their children are relatable to any parent—or anyone with a heart, for that matter. Merge that with increasing tension and the moral quandary Scott finds himself in, and this book works on numerous levels.

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Say Nothing

Say Nothing

By Brad Parks
Dutton
ISBN 9781101985595

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