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False Friend


False Friend

It’s hard to know quite what to think of Alabama detective Cooper Devereaux. Good guy or not so good guy? Maybe a little bit of both, but at least for now he’s still a cop. However, that could change at any moment. Someone seems to have damning information about him that Cooper wants taken out of circulation. But he has his hands full searching for an arsonist on the loose in Birmingham.

As the story opens, Cooper is trying to enjoy --- a term he’ll openly admit doesn’t quite describe his true feelings --- a play with his girlfriend, Alexandra. His phone vibrates, and he apologetically skips out to interview witnesses to a school fire. A grainy photo quickly leads the police to a suspect and a confession. Case solved. Or is it? The cops fear that was too easy and, well, it turns out it was. When another school goes up in flames, it becomes obvious that they got the wrong guy. And that’s when things get complicated.

"The characters here are what drive the story. Granted, the plot is twisty and full of clever departures from the norm, but the people on the pages are what truly propel the reader forward."

Meanwhile, Cooper’s girlfriend is having second thoughts about him, although the pair reunited only recently. Alexandra will tell you it feels good to be back together, yet it seems Cooper is absent far more than he’s around. True, that has to do with the nature of his job, but still it troubles her. And while Alexandra’s daughter, Nicole, adores Cooper, some of the child’s behavior since he moved in with them has been shocking, to say the least. What to think?

For his part, Cooper might just be that free spirit who is impossible to harness. It could be that he’s in love with the idea of being in love, but the day-to-day reality of it puts him off. Cooper wants to be with Alexandra and Nicole, but, to be honest, he really didn’t mind getting called away from that play. He thinks that family life is for him, but, well, maybe that’s because he’s almost never home. Cooper is the guy who knows what to say to get himself out of hot water, but keeps his mouth shut. He’s the guy who realizes showing up on time for dinner will score huge points, but stops along the way to follow a hunch. He’s the guy who hates having to drive a loaner Ferrari when his Porsche is in the shop. Maybe all of that tells you something about him right there. But the guy does his job well, even if his methods could sometimes be called questionable. Love him or hate him, Cooper gets results, although how he gets them might skirt what most people view as legal.

An enigma, that’s Cooper Devereaux. A lawyer, that’s Alexandra. So will it work between the two of them --- or, actually, the three of them? Good question. And one you may not ultimately discover the answer to in FALSE FRIEND.

The characters here are what drive the story. Granted, the plot is twisty and full of clever departures from the norm, but the people on the pages are what truly propel the reader forward. You won’t need a lot of time to get through this; it’s a speed read. The problem is that the next book in the series won’t be ready yet when you finish FALSE FRIEND, and you will be. The Devereaux series simply draws fans to it like a magnet.

Reviewed by Kate Ayers on February 3, 2017

False Friend
by Andrew Grant

  • Publication Date: August 1, 2017
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • ISBN-10: 0399594329
  • ISBN-13: 9780399594328