Author: Lisa Harris
Series: U.S. Marshals #1
Release Date: November 3, 2020
How do you catch a fugitive who has nothing to lose?
US Marshals Madison James and Jonas Quinn have orders to transport two high-profile prisoners across the country on a private plane. But when the plane experiences engine trouble en route from the Pacific Northwest to Colorado, the pilots crash-land the aircraft deep in the heart of the sprawling Salmon-Challis National Forest.
With both pilots and one prisoner dead--and one fugitive on the run--Madison and Jonas must negotiate the rugged and remote backcountry as they track a murderer who is desperate to disappear . . . and will do anything to stop them.
Reviewer: Marie Edwards
This is not the first book I’ve read by Lisa Harris (and likely won’t be the last either). Earlier this year, I read The Traitor’s Pawn. As a fan of Suspense and Romantic suspense, along with enjoying stories about law enforcement agencies, I couldn’t wait to read this.
My draw was not only the genre – but the fact that this is the first book in Harris’ U.S Marshals series. I loved the 1998 movie of the same name, which was a sequel of “The Fugitive” (1993), so this was definitely a “must grab” book, especially when the real action for both of them begins following a plane crash of a JPATS (Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System) flight that leads to a fugitive chase. [Side note: these flights are also nicknamed “Con Air”].
With that noted, the cover on this is very eye-catching and grabbed my attention, which made me quite curious.
The characters: Madison and Jonas are both well-rounded and solid leads. Each one having their own tragic back story that still connects them.
Madison’s is the unsolved shooting of her husband some five years earlier, and Jonas’ is the shooting/wounding of an ex-girlfriend. But, Harris leaves little time for romance between the two in this non-stop, action-packed, whirlwind read that is far more suspense than romance.
Madison and Jonas are too busy tracking down the other survivor. Damon Barrick is not only dangerous (a presumed killer), but a master-manipulator as well. There is little time to investigate his claims of being innocent. But is he?
Right off, the first sentence of chapter one grabbed me: “There is a razor-thin edge between justice and revenge, where the two easily blur if left unchecked.” How can you not want to continue reading this? Very seldom has a first-line grabbed me like that. In addition, the first chapter ended on a creepy note as well.
I thought I had a feeling about Barrick, and when I closed this book, I didn’t know whether I was right or wrong as an incident with Madison’s sister was not really solved per se.
Whether or not this is the author’s fault – towards the last few chapters, I almost devoured an entire HERSHEY’S XL chocolate bar as I was nervously reading this awaiting the end, and at one point, almost in tears. To state it is an exciting read would be grossly understated. This felt more like an edge-of-the-seat thrill ride through an uncharted wilderness territory with never-ending loops, twists, and turns. And, after it stopped, I wondered what just happened? I definitely needed time to catch my breath.
The references to Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson, two well known U.S Marshals, also added to the thrill of this, along with a Gunsmoke reference. My mother definitely schooled me in those old Western T.V. shows.
Written in short chapters, this is a highly addictive book that is hard to let go of and made me hold my breath in a few places. Although there were a few issues with present/past scene transitions, it didn’t seem to hinder my enjoyment of the book. And, after seeing “U.S Marshals,” this definitely played out like an action movie.
Readers should be warned that this is NOT a standalone read. The end is left “open” (meaning a few unresolved plotlines), and the sneak peek from the next book clearly indicates this is a series that will need to be read together. And I will definitely be reading book #2.
There is a slight “plot hole,” though it may reveal itself in book #2 – one character who had a connection to Barrick is somewhat “missing” by the end of the book (Bianca). I was trying to figure out who Barrick was and if this case was personal to Madison, yet at the end, there was nothing – or was there? Harris definitely left several things open, whether intentionally or not.
This does have a high “body” count regarding murders. Harris spares the readers the graphic details, though.
Although distributed by a Christian/faith themed publisher, there are few references to faith in this book. There is a slight mention of God and some faith talk, but no bible quotes, church talks, or character insights.
Readers who are fans of Lisa Harris, and particularly her romantic suspense/suspense books, will definitely want to check this out.
Thank you to Revell (a division of Baker Publishing Group) for providing a complimentary review copy through Interviews & Reviews. A positive review was not required, and all words are my own.
Reviewer: Raechel Kelly
Lisa Harris really does write some of the most captivating suspense fiction!
Right from the start, The Escape grips you and doesn't let go as we follow two US Marshals, Madison James and Jonas Quinn, as a routine escort goes horribly wrong.
I really enjoyed this novel. It was engaging and very hard to put down. Even when I wasn't reading, I was thinking about it. The characters are real, and the plot extremely well-written. Every piece of the story came across as believable, and it carried the suspense excellently.
But that ending - I need the next book! Just when you think things are going to be wrapped up....well, book two can't come soon enough!
I appreciated how tame and slow-burn the romance was in this novel. Sometimes romance can feel forced or unnatural in a suspense setting, but it was handled well in this, and definitely was not the main focus. I'm looking forward to seeing how the relationship continues to play out in the rest of the series. A great read!
This book was provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group (Revell), through Interviews & Reviews.
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