After graduation, Owen Laukkanen answered a Craigslist ad-and for the next three years, he was the tournament reporter for a poker website, traveling from the luxurious casinos of Monaco and Macau to the sketchiest card rooms of Atlantic City.
Four friends, recent graduates from the University of Washington, are caught in a terrible job market. One of them jokes that they should go into kidnapping, and soon they develop a scheme to kidnap wealthy businessmen for relatively small ransoms ($60,000 to $100,000) so that the victims can be convinced not to report their kidnapping to the police. Their plan succeeds for two years until the friends kidnap the wrong man; his wife happens to be connected to the mob. Soon hot on their tails are not only the mob but also Minneapolis police investigator Kirk Stevens and FBI agent Carla Windermere. VERDICT This well-written debut crime novel features a chillingly postmodern amorality and well-developed protagonists on both sides of the law who will have readers rooting for them. Thriller fans will be chomping at the bit for the next Stevens and Windermere novel in the planned series.-Vicki L. Gregory, Univ. of South Florida Sch. of Information, Tampa (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
"Really terrific-characters that live and breathe, and chills aplenty."--Lee Child
"Fasten your seat belts, Owen Laukkanen's The
Professionals is one heck of a wild ride."--John
Lescroart"Ingenious."--Jonathan Kellerman"Smoothly written, with a
slam-bang ending."--John Sandford"A coiling plot, insightful
characters, and a tale fraught with dangers...top-notch."--Steve
"A high-octane, adrenaline- and gunpowder-fueled rocket ride."--C. J. Box