Olivermagnus 's Reviews > First Family

First Family by David Baldacci
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This is Baldacci’s fourth novel featuring Former Secret Service agents and current private investigators, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell. They are on their way to see Pam Dutton, who is the President's sister-in-law, and has urgently requested their help. As they arrive at the Dutton house, they see a car speeding away. Of course they step in to try and catch the car but are unsuccessful. When they return, the FBI and Secret Service informs them that someone broke into the party, being attended by the First Lady, kidnapped twelve year old Willa Dutton, and shot and killed her mother. Because Sean once helped First Lady, Jane Cox, out of an embarrassing situation, she hires them to find Willa.

From the beginning we know who the kidnapper is, because his story is told in alternate chapters. We suspect Sam Quarry is out for some sort of revenge but we won't know the true story for quite some time. Sam is a fascinating man and completely different from the usual “bad guy” characters. The reader knows from the beginning that whatever caused him to plan this revenge has been weighing on his mind for over thirteen years. Willa is the star of this book and every section told from her point of view made the story more interesting.

I really enjoyed this part of the story but for some reason Baldacci chose to have another completely unrelated plot going on. In the third book of this series, readers discover that Michelle had a childhood trauma that has affected her in many ways. Because she was under hypnosis at the time she doesn't remember this. During the hunt for Willa, Michelle is called back to her hometown because someone killed her mother, and her father is a suspect. I felt like this thread completely disrupted the main story and I wish Baldacci had not chosen to trot it out in this book. Overall there was enough action and suspense, with a couple of twists, to make this an interesting look at power and how the powerful use it.

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Reading Progress

December 21, 2016 – Shelved
Started Reading
January 19, 2017 – Finished Reading

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