Death At Fort Devens

Mysterious Book Report No. 495

by John Dwaine McKenna

Death At Fort Devens, (Severn, $28.99, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1-4483-0766-1), by Peter Colt, is a good old-fashioned private-eye yarn that features a wise-cracking and tough as a yellow toenail . . . hard-drinking, hard-fisted, and hard-living—as well as a hard-up—ex-Boston cop and former Green Beret named Andy Roark . . . a character who kicks ass and takes names until he gets it all figured out.

In this third installment of his adventures, it’s the mid 1980s, and Roark is headed to the Special Forces Unit at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, in response to the request of Lt. Colonel David Billings, his squad leader in Vietnam, and the man who saved Roark from being killed in an NVA ambush, deep in the Laotian jungle.  The Colonel’s seventeen year-old daughter, Judy, has gone missing.  He wants Roark to find her, and the problem ridden, depressed private-eye is eager to bring the girl back—hoping to repay some of his karmic debt to Billings for saving his life.  The Colonel is in line for a promotion, possibly even a General’s star, and complications, such as a troubled teen, are out of the question if he is to succeed.  Roark finds that Judy has been dating an enlisted man, but when questioned, the young Specialist tells him they’ve broken up.  It appears that the Colonel’s daughter is now involved with a Boston criminal, a drug-dealing thug . . . who may have hooked her on heroin.  Roark then goes to Boston’s worst criminal district, known as the Combat Zone, where he leaves a path of blood, broken bones and terror in his wake, because he has untreated PTSD issues from his time in Vietnam.  This novel is fast and compelling, as well as an exciting read that’s perfect for those long lazy summer afternoons,  all leading to an electrifying conclusion that you’ll never see coming . . . it’s action-packed to the end!


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