The Vanishing Angle by Linda Ladd review

Thrillers to read in 202, the vanishing Angle by Linda Ladd



Let me start with The Vanishing Angle's strong point. This genre: an ex-military man fighting against a foreign plot to overtake or undermine all he believes in, has been going strong since the eighties. It could be stale, old fashioned, the strong silent is a worn-out cliche, but in The Vanishing Angle, Ex-Navy Seal turned investigator Will Novak is chatty and a stand-up guy. And his girlfriend Lori Gardner is an even more efficient threat because she has all the right connections in Washington, and she knows how to take of her self in a gunfight. Will and Lori are #relationshipgoals.
And maybe that is also this book weak point. It's cute that a guy like Will likes nothing more than hashing it out with his supercool sweetheart. They discuss every single detail of their upcoming mission to stop a bunch of Russians who are guilty of drug and human trafficking. Not once or twice do Will and Lori discuss their predictement but throughout this entire book. Now my husband and me are guilty or having the same conversation over and over, so it is kind of realistic that Will and Lori would repeat themselves throughout The Vanishing Angle— how they don't trust the Russian they have to deal with, or how the teenage girl they want to help, might be killed by the guys abusing her.
But it is too much exposition. The reader is savvy; there's no need to say things more than once or twice. It is easy to understand that a former Russian spy may be duplicitous, or a girl being exploited by criminals may end up dead. It's a given.
I would have liked to see the emphasis on strategic planning and action sequences, maybe by shortening the book and editing the dialogue. The story is enjoyable enough, although when concerning the opioid crisis, I will point in the direction of Michael Connelly excellent page turner Two Kinds of Truth or the latest season of Bosch. It is way more eye-opening. The Vanishing Single could have used much more depth when dealing with the corrupt and criminal senator at the helm of the drug empire, maybe a tad more Washington insider dealings.
Instead Will and Lori spend the central part of the book on a stakeout talking about what they are observing. Everyone knows stakeouts are endless and boring. You eat and talk a lot, waiting for something to happen. If Will and Lori, instead of repeating the stakes, would have exchanged some banter, it could have worked too.
I wanted more from this; all the elements are certainly there.

The gist: 

Will Novak after completing a mission, moors his boat, and is excited to be reunited with his girlfriend, Lori. When waiting for her, at a steak house, a strung-out teenage girl accompanied by two sketchy men points at Will, and they accost him and kidnap him. They bring him to the home of a well known Senator, who seems to be involved win some very dirty dealings with Russians and underage girls. At first, Will doesn't want to be involved, but when bullets start flying around, they leave me no other choice.

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