Monday, September 6, 2021


Mastermind by Andrew Mayne
9/7/21; 332 pages
Thomas & Mercer

Mastermind by Andrew Mayne is a highly recommended thriller featuring Dr. Theo Cray and FBI agent Jessica Blackwood.

Jessica Blackwood is called out of the class she is teaching at the FBI Academy in Quantico because a mysterious dark cloud and electrical storm has completely enveloped Manhattan plunging the entire city into darkness. The power is out and for 12 hours the city appears to have vanished into a void. Jessica is briefed along with others in a diverse team and then they enter into the cloud (in a frightening manner) and investigate. Jessica is sure that the serial killer and cultist known as the Warlock, Michael Heywood, is responsible and the cloud is a misdirection. Clouds also cover over Seoul and Singapore. It becomes clear that Jessica needs the help of Dr. Theo Cray, a brilliant scientist and computational biologist, but he is imprisoned in Myanmar. Jessica must use all her wits to get Theo released, and then they must figure out what is happening and why. 

Jessica Blackwood and Theo Cray are consummate characters and make a great team who work well together. They are both skilled and intelligent and it will require all their individual strengths and abilities to reveal what is really happening. These are strong characters, individually and together, and their individual areas of expertise and competence complement each other.

This is an action packed thriller that moves across the globe as clues are followed and anomalies or incidences need to be investigated. There is so much going on in the plot that you need to try and follow each clue and thought as it comes up. There is a little X-Files vibe contained in the plot, especially in the search for ultimate answer based on various scientific facts and a vast array of other topics that eventually connect various events and discoveries. With the twists and seemingly unconnected clues, it's impossible the guess the direction of the plot. There are so many possibilities and directions the plot could take which serves to increase the tension and intrigue.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Thomas & Mercer.

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