Strong As Steel
by Jon Land
on Tour April 22 - May 25, 2019
Tough-as-nails Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong returns in this electrifying ninth installment of the series, by USA Today bestselling author Jon Land
1994: Texas Ranger Jim Strong investigates a mass murder on a dusty freight train linked to a mysterious, missing cargo for which no record exists.
The Present: His daughter, fifth generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, finds herself on the trail of that same cargo when skeletal remains are found near an excavation site in the Texas desert. She’s also dealing with the aftermath of a massacre that claimed the lives of all the workers at a private intelligence company on her watch.
These two cases are connected by a long buried secret, one that men have killed and died to protect. Caitlin and her outlaw lover Cort Wesley Masters must prove themselves to be as strong as steel to overcome a bloody tide that has been rising for centuries.
Caitlin Strong is a Texas Ranger like no other. She is one tough woman and that comes across loudly in this novel. The story contains tons of suspense and an increasing body count. Caitlin is brought into a case that soon shows signs of relating to a case her father, also a Texas Ranger, had worked on when Caitlin was just a toddler. The story from decades ago is revealed little by little as Caitlin pursues the current mystery. The technique works rather well as the stories parallel each other. Some characters are involved in both cases and grudgingly reveal information to Caitlin.
The plot is complex, involving many locations and several different time periods. That means the beginning of the novel may be a bit confusing. Stories are given that don't seem to be related until later in the novel. But it does come together and make for a good narrative in the end.
Land's writing style is unique with clipped dialogue and frequent sarcasm. That gives a sense of the intensity of the work of the Rangers and the relationships between them. This is a good novel for readers who like a strong female heroine and who don't mind some of the bad guys actually being good guys (or just the opposite). There is even an aspect of an ancient mystery thrown in, with religious belief hanging in the balance. While this is a novel in an ongoing series, there is enough backstory woven in to make it read well on its own.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
Book Details:Genre: Thriller
Published by: Forge Books
Publication Date: April 23rd 2019
Number of Pages: 336
ISBN: 0765384671 (ISBN13: 9780765384676)
Series: Caitlin Strong #10
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Read an excerpt:
Jon Land is the award-winning, USA Today bestselling author of 50 books, including ten titles in the critically acclaimed Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong series, the last of which, STRONG TO THE BONE, won both the 2017 American Book Fest and 2018 International Book Award for Best Mystery. The next title in the series, STRONG AS STEEL, will be published in April. MANUSCRIPT FOR marked his second effort writing as Jessica Fletcher for the MURDER, SHE WROTE series, and he has also teamed with Heather Graham for a new sci-fi series starting with THE RISING. He is a 1979 graduate of Brown University, lives in Providence, Rhode Island.
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