A mysterious killer who calls himself The Artist is assassinating wealthy lawyers in San Francisco. When war veteran Jake Wolfe accidentally takes his picture during a murder, The Artist adds Jake to his kill list and he becomes a target in a deadly game of cat and mouse that only one of them can survive. How far would you go to protect your loved ones from a killer? Jake is a veteran who wants to leave his secret past life behind him, but the reluctant, flawed hero finds that he can’t ignore his duty and his personal moral compass.
This gripping thriller is full of suspense, plot twists, and surprises. It features a cast of interesting characters, including several strong-willed women, two wise-cracking San Francisco Police Homicide Inspectors, one highly intelligent dog, and a philosophical killer who shares Jake’s admiration for Van Gogh paintings but still plans to kill him anyway. As Jake gets closer to unraveling a merciless conspiracy, his life gets turned upside down and the danger level increases, adding to the growing suspense. This entertaining page-turner starts out as a murder mystery and then shifts gears into a high-speed action thriller that takes you on a roller-coaster ride to the riveting ending. A good read for those who enjoy mysteries, suspense, action and adventure, vigilante justice, unique characters, witty dialogue, and a little romance too. Now on sale in over a dozen countries around the world.
“I found it riveting and could not put the book down.”
“A life and death ride that keeps you on the edge of your seat. I stayed up half the night so I could finish this book.”
“An action-packed thriller from beginning to end! A cross between the action in the “Die Hard” movies, and the joking relationship between partners in the “Lethal Weapon” movies.”
“I wish I could have given this book 10 stars–it is that good. If you like playing detective, you will love this book.”
“This is the best action mystery book I have read. Mark Nolan is a hidden treasure.”
“This book caused me a few sleepless nights, unable to put the book down, unwilling to wait to see how the twists and turns would end up!”
“There is non-stop pandemonium, international intrigue, twists and turns, secrets and lies… with an ending that that will shake you to the core.”
“What a great story and thrilling ride! So well written. Jake Wolfe kicks ass.”
Jake Wolfe is across between Jack Ryan, Jason Bourne, and Clark Kent. That is a reluctant hero with his boots on the ground and a very specific skill set, hidden behind a mild-mannered facade. Okay, maybe not so mild, but still I think you get the picture.
The opening sentence hooked me right in and it was a high octane ride all the way to the end. I really enjoyed the look into a dog handler’s life, not to mention the dog in question. I love that Cody was written as a wounded war veteran with a voice of his own. It is not easy to give words to an animal in setting such as this.
This book full of twists, high on suspense and had just enough sarcasm to keep me laughing in all the right places. I see so much potential for a series starring Jake Wolfe and I can’t wait to see what he does next.
All praise aside, this should have been an easy 5-star read. The main character is strong enough to move the story. He is surrounded by a well-developed cast of secondary characters that shine on their own all the while illuminating him. Also, the villain, while not quite as sympathetic as the author tried to write him, was dynamic, charismatic and would have been pure evil joy whether he got taken out in this story or lived to torture Jake in a future installment. Despite all the great things this story had going for it, my instinct was the rate it quite low.
The truth is about two thirds through the book I started watching the counter on my kindle to see just when it was going to end. The story never faltered it was just way too much. Too many sub plots (good as they were on their own) drained from the main story and made it drag out. If the author can pull back slightly and streamline his plots a bit, Jake Wolfe is destined to take his place among the most acclaimed bad-asses in action fiction.
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
The camera was still pointed where he’d aimed it, right below the Congressman’s face, and in the center of Katherine’s abdomen. He could control it the same way he’d controlled the crossbow in the tree that had so eloquently killed the disgusting attorney in his hot tub.
The Congressman finally moved his head and he turned to grin at the audience.
[He] was thrilled. It was perfect. After stalking Katherine for months now and studying her every habit and scheduled speech, it was the perfect moment.
He quickly typed the code into his phone that activated the camera weapon’s trigger and said, “Bye-bye baby.”
Inside the auditorium, one of the Secret Service agents was in a balcony, searching the crowd with his binoculars and he saw [the] unmanned camera appear to move up and down slightly while nobody was touching it.
“What the hell?” He said.
He felt a chill go down his spine, and he spoke into the microphone in his shirtsleeve cuff. “Code One on the television camera. It might be a remote-controlled weapon. Take out the target’s camera, knock it down, shoot it, do it now!”
There were cries of alarm from the crowd as two agents ran towards the camera, one from each side, neither one knowing if it might explode in his or her face, but each doing their duty in spite of the risk. Several other agents were seconds away from placing themselves in front of the Congressman and Mrs. Anderson, directly in the line of fire.
On the balcony, Adams aimed his tranquilizer rifle at the television camera. The dart had a powerful impact that could knock it over. However, the dart might ricochet and hit someone in the eye, so he had to make a perfect shot. It was a calculated risk he had to take when there was a clear and present danger to the protected. He quickly and professionally focused on the camera, inhaled a breath, and let it out as he squeezed the trigger.
At that same moment, the camera weapon fired. The two weapons were triggered almost simultaneously as the sniper pulled the trigger on his tranq rifle, and the assassin’s phone signal triggered the weapon hidden inside the television camera.
Adams was looking through his scope, and he felt his stomach sink as he saw the camera kick and emit a puff of vapor as the weapon inside of it fired its unusual round of ammunition. Although his own sniper rifle had fired at nearly the same moment, his dart hit the camera one split second too late. The dart knocked the camera flying backward, but not before the strange device had fired its projectile. Adams cursed and picked up his other rifle that was loaded with live ammunition, and he scanned the crowd with his scope, hoping to put a real bullet into the head of [… anyone] who might pose a threat.
The agents that had been running to put their bodies in harm’s way now heard the muffled shot from the television camera, just as they leaped in front of the couple in an urgent attempt to protect them. Each of the agents was thinking the same thing. They hoped to get in front of the bullet and be shot by it, sacrificing their bodies in defense of the protected. That was the way they’d been trained, and it was what they were sworn to do.
“Please let it hit me,” they thought, “let me take the bullet.”
These brave men and women of the United States Secret Service lived day to day with the willingness for self-sacrifice. This was their job, and they didn’t think twice about performing their sworn duty, even if it meant they might be injured or killed.
The single round that … fired by remote control shot out of the camera and barely missed the Secret Service Agents who had thrown themselves in its way. The strange projectile flew past within an inch of one agent’s ribcage and lightly grazed the underside of the coat sleeve of another agent’s raised arm. The projectile flew through a small space in-between the protecting agents’ bodies and hit Katherine Anderson directly on her stomach. The impact was right under Congressman Anderson’s nose as he was bent over and posing for the cameras, oblivious to what was happening with the Agents.
A bright red, thick liquid stain appeared on Katherine’s maternity dress and splashed up onto the Congressman’s face, dripping down his cheek. This horrific imagery was broadcast across the nation by dozens of TV cameras that were taking video from all angles. Hundreds of people in the audience, and millions more across America who were watching on TV and on the internet, all cried out in unison at the sight of it.
Katherine screamed and fainted, and fell to the floor. Daniel got down on his knees on the stage next to her and held her head in his arms, calling her name. Men and women wearing dark sunglasses and armed with automatic machine gun pistols surrounded Daniel and Katherine, forming a human shield in a circle around them. Other agents blocked the doors of the auditorium so no one could go in or out. One agent approached the microphone and yelled orders for everyone to put their hands on top of their heads. Several people in the audience fainted, others were crying.
Adams pointed a red laser targeting light at the chests of anyone in the audience who did not put their hands on their heads fast enough. He blamed himself for not shooting the camera a split second sooner, and now he wanted to shoot a bad guy, any bad guy. On stage, Katherine was semi-conscious and moaning, “My baby, my baby.” Daniel was cradling her in his arms and calling for a doctor. The two Secret Service agents that had run to the location of the camera were now pointing pistols at the closest news reporters and demanding to know where Jacob Wolfe had gone.
Nolan, Mark. Dead Lawyers Don't Lie: A Gripping Thriller (Jake Wolfe Book 1) (Kindle Locations 4414-4455). . Kindle Edition.
Mark Nolan began his writing career as a successful entrepreneur who created news stories for businesses that were featured in The Wall Street Journal, National Geographic, Parade, Readers Digest and Associated Press. Nolan was born in San Francisco, grew up in the Bay Area of California, and has also lived in the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii.