7 Grams of Lead: Keith Thomson
Two Russians brought to America and placed in a special facility in order to create the perfect EBomb. Within the facility someone is watching over them and wants to make sure that the Ebomb is created and that there are no loose ends when the final product is made. Just who is behind this and why do we hear the voice of POTUS at the start of the novel is the work of a creative, devious and deadly assassin and operative named Canning. But, first he has many players within his realm of destruction to take out of the equation hoping at the end to reap the monetary benefits.
Russ Thornton is a journalist and blogger who gets in the way of Canning and is about to learn more than he wants revealed when meeting with an old flame named Catherine Peretti. But, Catherine and Russ take many different routes, enter the Statan Island Ferry and find themselves trying to escape anyone that might be following them. But sometimes all the best-laid plans fall short and when the enter Au Pain and take their seats someone comes out of nowhere and ends her life. This is just the beginning for Russ Thornton as he’s fate is now sealed as he’s taken away along with the late Catherine and unknowing to him someone manages to implant a listening and tracking device in his head and hopes to you might say hack into his brain in order to know his ever move. Smart, persistent and definitely astute Russ plans on finding out who planted the bug and hopefully getting it removed. Peretti and a Capitol Hill staffer, is about to disclose something important to him but when is killed right in front of his eyes and now the chase begins to outrun, outfox and gain the insight to the technology that has been created to destroy entire cities with one push of a detonator.
Thinking out loud he contacts an operative at the NSA hoping that O’Clair will provide the answers to how to remove the device and hopefully learn its origin. But, things begin to heat up as the author takes center and us front into the political arena listening to Beryl Mallery and her opponent debate. Odd information comes to light as Beryl wonders how this man learned about her indiscretions and policies.
Information comes at a high price as we flashback to the beginning and learn more about Canning and his goals. Hoping to implant the listening and tracking device in the brains of both Bella and Leo Sokolov something fails and Leo dies. Bella’s implant is a success allowing him to follow her every move, the safe house she was taken to and her decision to not go back to work. When she finally gives in little does she know that those that she is teaching and instructing could be using what they learn to their advantage and someone is listening to it all?
Hoping to have the device removed Thornton and O’Clair devises a plan but not everyone and everything is what it seems. Allowing him to know that if they have two devices and both are removed he might be able to find out where the signal is coming from and locate the receiver, Thornton enlists the help of the Senate hopeful Mallory knowing that she has an implant. But, just when you think you know what will happen next you don’t’ as author Keith Thomson throws a curve bomb or ball you might say right at the reader and things change as O’Clair becomes another expendable casualty in the quest for money, power and much more.
Two FBI agents are working to learn more about Thornton and when you understand just who is behind what is about to happen to him next, who wants him out of the way and why you will shudder. No one can be trusted and there is so much corruption within each agency it is hard to tell just who Thornton might be relies on. But, first he is kidnapped, tortured, prodded and probed, starved and placed in a cell that would make anyone else lose their lunch and mind hoping that the end would be near but not Russ. Just when he thought he would not survive someone comes to his rescue but he’s far from out of the woods as one of his rescuers is not what he appears to be and just how he handles it lets you know he’s no one to fool with and he’s back in the game.
“Joseph Stalin’s solution to a problem was “seven grams of lead to the head.” As the story began Sokolov was believed to have been brought to the United States to work for the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency: DARPA, which dealt with the global positioning system, the computer mouse, ARPANET, which included the Internet. Could this bullet be a strong message to anyone in Russia that wants to defect? Or does it mean something else? When journalist and blogger Russ Thornton adds a notation to his posting about this bullet it sends shockwaves down the spine of a dangerous killer. The technology author Keith Thomson describes within Chapter 9 is mindboggling. The range of destruction and the capabilities of some of these weapons unbelievable. But, when you learn more about Peter Canning, what his real agenda is and what he is trying to do, you begin to see the depth of his anger, his mode of destruction yet wonder if anyone will be able to stop what he has planned. Just who does he want to sell is he making an offer for the EBOMB and the formula to make more? Why? What will he gain and how many lives will be taken?
Listen to the encrypted phone call and code words used between Canning and a man called Rapada. Understand that failure is not an option and that no one is immune to his wrath. Senator Langlid what role does he plays and where does he fit into this dangerous equation? How did he learn about Mallery and where did the Intel come from that would give him the senate seat and cause her loss? A listening device implanted in your brain allowing you to learn government secrets, use it as a weapon against anyone that comes up against you and allows you the ability to know what businesses and multi-millionaires have planned? What would you do with this power called “Little Bird”? What happens when Thornton gets too close? A remote so deadly you won’t see it coming but the explosion and impact just might be deadly. What did Mallory and Thornton find out when they break into Windward Actuarial? What happens to foil their efforts? What did they learn that might break it wide open and reveal all of the players? Phones calls and conversations revealed, information about what Catherine Peretti might have seen and seven grams of lead plugged in her brain. Was it to silence her or was it as Thornton says merely a diversion to get them off track dealing with the death of Leonid Sokolov and the reason why Little Bird failed in him but not in his wife? Special Agents so corrupt, a government agency behind it all: What did Catherine see that got her killed you won’t believe it? An ending so explosive you won’t see it coming and the final fate of Mallery and Thornton cannot be revealed, as it is too dangerous to reveal to the reader. Seven Grams of Lead: All the answers to these questions and more will be revealed to readers when you read this FIVE STAR NOVEL.
Russ Thornton is a solid character whose persistence and determination to bring down whoever is behind what happened to Catherine and took the lives of so many others. Seven Grams of Lead: Be careful: Who will get it next? Let’s hope the author brings back Russ in another novel using his journalistic skills to solve a crime.
Fran Lewis: Reviewer