February 6, 2012

The Informationist by Taylor Stevens

Governments pay her. Criminals fear her. Nobody sees her coming. I sure didn't.

Vanessa Michael Munroe speaks 22 languages. She can blend into any crowd and pull information out of thin air. And she's been trained to get the job done, no matter what it takes. She's paid  by governments and corporations to get information that is seemingly impossible to obtain. But this mission is different. She's hired by Texas oil billionaire Richard Burbank to find his daughter Emily who disappeared in Africa four years ago. Others have searched and others have failed. So far "Michael" has a perfect record, but is this where perfection ends?

I couldn't put this book down. Others compare Michael to Lisbeth Salander from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series but other than the fact that they both had a troubled past and could obtain seemingly difficult information I didn't really see any other connections. And I personally liked Michael a heck of a lot more than I liked Lisbeth. Michael reminded me more of Jason Bourne mixed with Jennifer Garner on Alias - tough, sexy, and lethal while still allowing a hint of her personal life and emotions to play through. Maybe it's because it's everything I'm not, but I loved her character and I loved how she played different roles as part of the overall strategy to find out what happened to Emily.

On top of having a great main character, the story is full of twists and turns that kept me guessing within the first few chapters. A thriller that allowed me to share in the adrenaline as Michael fought for the missing information. And finally, I loved the supporting characters in the book and how Stevens developed them well enough to make you curious and intrigued without giving away too much. I for one will definitely be picking up Stevens second book, The Innocent, to see what dazzling adventure Michael takes us on next.

I would definitely recommend this book to any adult who likes a good thriller, especially ones with a fierce female lead. But be warned, while not over the top, the book does have quite a bit of language and has a couple of gruesome moments. 4 stars
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