Warren C. Easley has created an entertaining cast of engaging characters in his five prior novels, but if Moving Targets is your first dip into the series, he sets the scene of this fast-moving mystery so you can keep up. Each of these books can be enjoyed as stand-alones, so if you're a newcomer, you don’t have to go back ... Even if you’ve never been to Portland, Easley writes with such a strong sense of place that it puts you right in the scene that many writers try, but often fail, to accomplish.
It's a perennial mystery theme ... greedy oligarchs overbuild high-rises...decimate neighborhoods ... It’s a familiar trail of crime syndicates, money laundering, and contract killers, but what’s most interesting is Claxton himself—good-natured, superficially dull as dishwater, not at all deft with the ladies. He’s generally slow to anger, too, but when the greedheads, on top of their international scams, crank up a loud gravel quarry outside Claxton’s home, things change. They should have known better.
Political corruption, collusion with foreign interests, money laundering, and so much more emerge as Cal investigates ... Intelligent dialogue, evocative descriptions of the Oregon landscape, and sly pokes at the current cultural climate make this a winner.
Though the implication of the mob in real estate isn’t the most imaginative gambit, Easley continues in every installment of this series to get a better handle on his characters and the vital balance between principal and supporting plots.