Top Tier (4 to 5 stars)

Prodigal Son [Orphan X #6], by Gregg Hurwitz

5 out of 5 stars. High octane high-tech thriller and emotional rollercoaster.

5 stars

The last time I’ve seen Evan Smoak, he’d just made an deal with the president of the United States. She’d offered him a kind of pardon – under the condition that he quit being the Nowhere Man. And it could, in theory, have been an end to the series. Of course, the last thing that happened was his phone buzzing with a call from a woman declaring to be his mother who had abandoned him a lifetime ago.

Wait, his mother? But he’s an Orphan!

Welcome to the setup for book 6 in this series of high octane thrillers!

As usual, Evan is a great character for a hero. He’s always trying to be perfect in everything he does, which would make him a terrible protagonist in many books. It speaks high volumes of Gregg’s talents as an author that he manages to turn the seemingly superhuman hero of his books into an all too human man with his own faults, quirks and longings. I always enjoyed the inner workings of Evan’s mind – methodical, logical when he’s doing his thing, but he seems to be at a total loss regarding everything that has to do with other humans.

This time, everything is going to be so much more personal than ever before, forcing him to address his emotional problems and instability. It’s great seeing him finally come to grips with a lot of things, and this is an important part of his journey. He finds – and loses – a mother, a half brother and a new sense of self.

Think drones are toys? Better think twice!

But Gregg mixes this all up with a high tech thriller about killer drones, and as Evan tries to come to grips with suddenly having a family, the odds are stacked ever higher against him. It’s this nonstop suspense that’s the hallmark of the Orphan X series. It keeps you turning page after page after page.

Because Gregg is a master of pace and plotting. If you’re looking for high octane thrills, he’s one of the best. And now he’s entering family into the fray, and everything is so much more volatile. Because of course you can’t expect his mom to be the milk-and-cookies kind of a mom.

“Good”, she said, “Kill every last one of them.”

Wise words of a loving mother

The story is an emotional rollercoaster as well, and if you’re a fan of this series, you will be pleased to see the direction Evan takes. And if you’re not yet a fan – what are you waiting for?

By Stefan

father of two, not enough time to read everything I want to read

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