The Final Twist by Jeffery Deaver

Today I am delighted to join the blog tour for The Final Twist the latest instalment in the Colter Shaw series from Jeffery Deaver. I absolutely love this series and I have been longing for this next book for what feels like forever. It hasn’t been, but after hitting us with such a revelation at the end of The Goodbye Man, I needed to know what Colter was going to do next. Did it meet my expectations? Well if you read on you can find out, but first here’s the important book bits:

Source: Advance Reader Copy
Release Date: 13 May 2021
Publisher: Harper Collins

About the Book

Twist left.

Unique Investigator Colter Shaw is searching for the answer to his father’s final, posthumous riddle. It will lead him to evidence that will topple the secretive espionage company, BlackBridge.

Twist right.

He believes BlackBridge to be responsible for his father’s murder and brother’s disappearance. They can outmanoeuvre anyone, as the long trail of bodies behind them can confirm.
But they haven’t yet met Colter Shaw.

Don’t slip up.

This time the stakes are huge – the fate of a nation is in Colter’s hands. He must find the solution as to why his father died – but to do that he needs to stay alive…

My Thoughts

Ooooh. This book. Did it meet my expectations? You bet it did and so much more. The Final Twist sees our hero, Colter Shaw, take on his most personal case yet. Because this is personal, a quest for the truth, maybe even revenge, but certainly for justice following the death of his father at the hands of an operative working for the elusive, and very dangerous company, BlackBridge. Taking his search to the streets of San Francisco, as readers we are treated to not only a brilliantly paced and intrigue laden thriller, but also some real surprises, none more so than an unexpected reunion between Shaw and a face from his past.

From the very opening chapters of this book you can feel that underlying tension building, Shaw’s quest to find the missing evidence his father was searching for becoming more urgent and yet seemingly more distant with every lead he marks off his list. Although we join the story at a point where Shaw has exhausted nearly all avenues and all clues that his father has left, you never once get the feeling he is likely to give up. That’s not in his nature. And that’s what I really love a bout the character of Colter Shaw. He’s a man who deals in probabilities, constantly working the likelihood of an event occurring whilst concurrently running the scenario through some really complex and dynamic risk assessments. He, and his siblings, have been taught well by their father and his survival skills are finely honed, and yet he is not portrayed as a superman style character. He is as likely to be hurt as any man, although his quick thinking nature give him one heck of head start. And he fights for what is right, even when the cost to him, both financial and physical, can be quite steep.

As much as this is story about Shaw’s quest for the truth about his father’s death and to bring those he believes responsible to justice, there are also two other threads which run alongside his quest, one inextricably linked to his father’s death and that has major repercussions for the far more than just Shaw. The evidence he is searching for is an unknown quantity at first but it doesn’t take much hard thinking to work out where Jeffery Deaver may have taken some of his inspiration from for some of the less than scrupulous characters Shaw comes into contact with, or the implications of what he ultimately finds. It’s a really chilling thought, but not outside of the realms of possibility and that adds to the sense of jeopardy in everything Shaw does. And because he’s not quite busy enough avenging his father’s death, Shaw takes on a reward case, a missing young girl whose mother has little to offer, but who Shaw knows that he can help, once again demonstrating his human, caring side.

Now the book is not all about Shaw, and in Droon and Braxton he has two very worthy and dangerous adversaries who are more than willing to twist the knife – quite literally in Droon’s case. I really like the way in which the trio play off each other, the strange dynamic between Droon and Baxter combining them to be the almost archetypal villain, between the calm and controlled Braxton and the violence addicted psychopathic nature of Droon. There are others in the frame too, the CEO of BlackBridge for a start, who is always on the periphery, directing the action but keeping his hands clean. All three of the BlackBridge crew are objectionable and yet I can’t help liking Droon and Baxter – in as much as you can ever like the stories antagonists. But there is really one other character who is a standout alongside Shaw. I don’t want to say too much as I think that part of the story might be spoiled if I did, but a big thumbs up for Russell from me. As removed from Shaw as you could possibly imagine, the two complimented each other perfectly, and I can’t help thinking that there are many stories to be told there – perhaps a spin off series?

If you like a well plotted, intelligently written, action packed and mystery laden read, full of misdirection and with more twists and turns than Lombard Street, then this would be right up your street. If you haven’t read the previous two books, and why not, then I’d suggest reading at the very least, The Goodbye Man as this book leads on almost directly from that and some of what happens in the story is informed by what Colter Shaw went through before, especially in that book. But you probably want to read The Never Game to understand his, how should I put it, complicated history with Braxton and Droon. So really you probably just want to read all three, and the short stories too, as Colter Shaw is a fantastic character and the very nature of these books and Shaw’s chosen career path make this an addictive and intriguing series to read from first book to last.

I loved this book and love Jeffery Deaver’s writing style, totally cinematic, putting the reader in the mind and shoes of the protagonist, and at the very heart of the action. And he always, always, leaves you second guessing everything. Never take what you see for granted with these books. The real final twist? Well it is one of those things that you just won’t see coming. Highly recommended.

About the Author

Jeffery Deaver is an international number-one bestselling author. His novels have appeared on bestseller lists around the world. His books are sold in 150 countries and translated into twenty-five languages. He has served two terms as president of Mystery Writers of America, and was recently named a Grand Master of MWA, whose ranks include Agatha Christie, Ellery Queen, Mary Higgins Clark and Walter Mosely.

The author of forty-three novels, three collections of short stories and a nonfiction law book, and a lyricist of a country-western album, he’s received or been shortlisted for dozens of awards. His “The Bodies Left Behind” was named Novel of the Year by the International Thriller Writers association, and his Lincoln Rhyme thriller “The Broken Window” and a stand-alone, “Edge,” were also nominated for that prize. “The Garden of Beasts” won the Steel Dagger from the Crime Writers Association in England. He’s also been nominated for eight Edgar Awards by the MWA.

Deaver has been honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Bouchercon World Mystery Convention, the Strand Magazine’s Lifetime Achievement Award and the Raymond Chandler Lifetime Achievement Award in Italy.

His book “A Maiden’s Grave” was made into an HBO movie starring James Garner and Marlee Matlin, and his novel “The Bone Collector” was a feature release from Universal Pictures, starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie. Lifetime aired an adaptation of his “The Devil’s Teardrop.” NBC television recently aired the nine-episode prime-time series, “Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector.”

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