#BookReview: THE ROOM OF WHITE FIRE by T. Jefferson Parker

A young soldier escaped from a mental institution.
A P.I. carrying his own wounds hired to track that soldier down.
A race against the clock to bring the soldier home before he reveals the secret that haunts him.

Roland Ford—once a cop, then a marine, now a private investigator—is good at finding people. But when he’s asked to locate Air Force veteran Clay Hickman, he realizes he’s been drawn into something deep and dark. He knows war, having served as a Marine in first Fallujah; he also knows personal pain, as only two years have passed since his wife, Justine, died. What he doesn’t know is why a shroud of secrecy hangs over the disappearance of Clay Hickman—and why he’s getting a different story from everyone involved.

To begin with, there’s Sequoia, the teenage woman who helped Clay escape; she’s smart enough to fend off Ford’s questions but impetuous enough to be on the run with an armed man. Then there’s Paige Hulet, Clay’s doctor, who clearly cares deeply for his welfare but is impossible to read, even as she inspires in Ford the first desire he has felt since his wife’s death. And there’s Briggs Spencer, the proprietor of the mental institution who is as enigmatic as he is brash, and ambitious to the point of being ruthless. What could Clay possibly know to make this search so desperate?

What began as just a job becomes a life-or-death obsession for Ford, pitting him against immensely powerful and treacherous people and forcing him to contend with chilling questions about truth, justice, and the American way.

Release Date: August 22, 2017

Amazon / Amazon UK / Amazon CA

 

My Review

T. Jefferson Parker is one of the (increasingly rare) established authors I can always count on for a great story. He puts me in the moment, makes me feel the emotions, and is a master at creating tension and believability.

In this American hour words meant everything and nothing.

This story could be ripped from the headlines, although if it was we probably wouldn’t hear about it. We go with Roland Ford as he peels apart the layers and uncovers a truth that people with money and power would prefer remain hidden. The danger ramps up until things converge in an explosive, dramatic conclusion.

As a veteran I wondered for the millionth time why some of us had such profoundly bad reactions to war but others did not.

The characters are well developed and memorable. Even the minor characters come alive, adding depth and spice to the story.

Being in the air makes me feel close to her, makes my problems on earth seem smaller.

The Room of White Fire is slow-burning suspense with a strong psychological component and a fascinating cast of characters. I think this is meant to be a stand-alone novel, but I’m hoping Parker brings Roland Ford back for another spin.

*I received an ARC from the publisher, via Amazon Vine, in exchange for my honest review.*

 

Thanks for reading. 🙂