Next of Kin by James Tucker

Next of Kin by James Tucker
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery, Action/Adventure
Length: Full length (337 pages)
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Ginger

A New Year’s Eve celebration begins with the pop of a champagne cork—and ends with the bone-chilling screams of a killer’s victims. Ten-year-old Ben Brook is the lone survivor of the brutal murder of his wealthy family at their upstate New York compound. But from the moment he evades death, Ben’s life is in constant danger. Can NYPD detective Buddy Lock keep the boy safe from a killer intent on wiping out the entire Brook clan?

When two more massacres decimate the Brookses’ ranks, Buddy’s hunt narrows. But his challenges grow as power, money, and secret crimes from the family’s past stand in the way. With Ben more and more at risk, Buddy steps closer to the edge, forcing a relentless killer to become more brazen, brutal, and cunning. Saving the boy will put all of Buddy’s skills to the test…and risk the lives of everyone he loves.

This is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed from page one to the end. Very well written, a plot that is full of suspense and an unpredictable ending.

Ten-year-old Ben Brook is the lone survivor of the brutal murder of his wealthy family and New York Police Department Detective Buddy Lock is the one that is called to duty to protect Ben from a killer who is intent on wiping out the entire Brook clan. As long as the killer is still on the loose more massacres of the Brook’s family are happening and Ben and those around him are in danger.

I enjoyed the bond that Ben developed with Mei, Buddy’s girlfriend, but I felt that their bond developed way to quick. Buddy wasn’t around Ben that much but Ben quickly developed a fondness and need for Buddy. Ben is stated to be ten years old but by his actions his age seemed to be younger.

I like the formatting of short chapters. The author providing the character’s back story did help with the development of the characters and also helps develop a connection for the reader. The author didn’t delve into too much detail but gave enough insight.

The suspense starts from the first page and continues onward. For me the ending was not predictable. The book is excellently written, and the plot is well planned and staged out. The book kept my interest; the murders kept happening and Ben’s life was constantly in danger. Each chapter delivered an intense page turner bringing the reader closer to solving the mystery. This is an action oriented plot that did have a few instances that seemed unrealistic but still gave the story conflict to keep the level of suspense going.

I enjoyed how the author tied in the story with the Holocaust survivors and victims. Reading this brought something extra to the story and gave it realness by making it seem the events could actually be true.

I am looking forward to the next book in the series.

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