Sunday 22 January 2017

Book ~ "The Stolen Ones" (2015) Owen Laukkanen

From Goodreads ~ Cass County, Minnesota: A sheriff’s deputy steps out of a diner on a rainy summer evening and a few minutes later, he’s lying dead in the mud. When BCA agent Kirk Stevens arrives on the scene, he discovers local authorities have taken into custody a single suspect: a hysterical young woman found sitting by the body, holding the deputy’s own gun. She has no ID, speaks no English. A mystery woman.

The mystery only deepens from there, as Stevens and Carla Windermere, his partner in the new joint BCA–FBI violent crime task force, find themselves on the trail of a massive international kidnapping and prostitution operation. Before the two agents are done, they will have traveled over half the country, from Montana to New York, and come face-to-face not only with the most vicious man either of them has ever encountered - but two of the most courageous women. 

They are sisters, stolen ones. But just because you’re a victim doesn’t mean you have to stay one.

Kirk Stevens a special agent with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA).  He has just taken his family on a camping vacation when he gets a call that a police officer had been shot and Irina, the suspect, was found with him.  Since Stevens is close by, his boss asks him if he'd mind checking it out ... it should only take a couple hours.

Stevens discovers there is more to the case than everyone thought.  As he investigates, he finds that Irina and her sister, Catalina, had been kidnapped from their home in Romania, along with many other women, and transported across the Atlantic Ocean in a container on a ship.  They were going to be sold as prostitutes.  Irina had escaped from the container as it was being transported across the States but Catalina didn't.  Stevens has a daughter Catalina's age so is determined to put a stop to this operation.  He calls in his partner, Carla Windermere, who is an FBI special agent.

I enjoyed this book.  Though this is the fourth in the Stevens and Windermere series (I've read them all including the fifth one), it works well as a stand alone.  I liked the writing style and found the storyline interesting.  It's written in third person perspective with a focus on the various characters.  I like the short and/or choppy chapters.  As a head's up, there is swearing.

I liked Windermere and Stevens.  They are thorough and caring and will do anything and go anywhere to solve a case.  Mathers is a fellow FBI agent and colleague and he and Windermere have a "relationship".  Windermere has always been a loner ... though she cares about Mather, she isn't willing to admit it to him or herself.

I look forward to reading the next one which will be out soon.

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