While overseas fighting in the Afghan war, traumatized U.S. Army soldier Coop's wife dies, and he takes a brief leave to attend to her affairs. But when Coop discovers his wife's death was far more suspicious than anyone told him, he goes AWOL, using his military training to discover the truth of what happened.
... [a] compelling debut mystery. He presents two main characters whose every move and perception has been shaped by wartime ... Harrowing connections are made to financial scammers, the Italian Mafia, and the sadists controlling street sales, along with equally harrowing glances back at Coop’s adventures in the Afghan desert.
O’Brien’s ability to express the human experience of inner turmoil and atonement, revenge and justice, displays his powerful and engaging talent as a writer ... Fans of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch series will appreciate Coop’s brusque, principled personality.
Set in 2003, O’Brien’s impressive debut charts a soldier’s dogged search for the truth about his estranged wife’s death ... The revelation in the first chapter that Katherine was struck by a car in which an Albanian drug dealer was riding, along with a person he believed cheated him and had just abducted, heightens the suspense as Cooper relies on his professional skills to find out what happened. Fans of Nick Petrie’s Peter Ash novels will be pleased.