Book Title: Poisonfeather
Author: Matthew Fitzsimmons
Series: Gibson Vaughn #2
Genres: Political Thriller, Suspense Fiction, Mystery, Contemporary
Date Read: 09/30/16
Pub Date: 10/04/16
When jailed billionaire Charles Merrick hints publicly that he has stashed a fortune in an offshore cache, a school of sharks converges upon his release from federal prison.
Among his swindled victims is Judge Hammond Birk, the man who saved Gibson Vaughn’s life when he was a troubled teenager. Now Gibson intends to repay that debt by recovering Merrick’s victims’ money.
But Gibson isn’t the only one on the trail of the hidden fortune.
The promise of billions has drawn a horde of ruthless treasure hunters, including an edgy ex-con, a female bartender with a mysterious history, a Chinese spy with a passion for fly-fishing, and a veritable army of hardened mercenaries. To stay ahead of the sharks and win justice for his mentor, Gibson will need all his formidable skills. But at the end of the road, he’ll still have to face “Poisonfeather”—a geopolitical secret that just might get Gibson killed…or worse.
Some of you might remember my review of The Short Drop last year; if not, it was in my top 10 books read in 2015 and you can find my review HERE. Never have I been so engrossed in a political thriller; usually I just keep scrolling past those types, but that particular one caught my eye as it had such high ratings from nearly everyone. Currently, the book has 28,232 ratings/1,969 reviews and a 4.15 star average on Goodreads. All that being said, this set a fantastically high bar for a follow up book. The characters quickly became close friends, the action and suspense were as thrilling as possible, and the writing was as close to perfect as I could hope for; the author clearly has a way with words and oodles of talent. The Short Drop left us with a bit of a cliffhanger and I have been waiting for this book like a teenage girl longing for the latest Kardashian Kraze. If you, like me, have been anxiously awaiting Poisonfeather, go ahead and enter the giveaway for a copy HERE.
I just need to get something out of the way first, and I’ll keep this as spoiler free as possible for those who haven’t read The Short Drop yet. For some reason I was expecting this book to pick up right where the previous one left off, and it DID in the fact that it follows chronologically right afterward, but story-wise this book is almost it’s own. I’ll admit that I whined a bit at the fact it wasn’t truly a sequel to our first Gibson Vaughn experience; this book is almost entirely a stand alone featuring our main character aside from the fact it is peppered ever so slightly with enough spoiler material that you can’t read it as a standalone. “Atlanta” and the other former characters are mentioned a handful of times, and then you have an amazing AHA ending that blazes the trail for book 3 to pick up where a good deal of book 1 left off. Once I was able to set that initial disappointment aside, I was able to enjoy this book for what it was. Now, on to the official review!
Poisonfeather is a high stakes thriller that kept me guessing until quite literally the last page. The beginning was a little slower in pace, as it had a good deal of setting up to do, but once the action started I couldn’t put it down. FitzSimmons clearly has a way with words; his writing style is so exquisite I sometimes forget I’m reading “just a thriller”. The descriptions of everything from the setting to the internal monologue of the characters is in a nutshell, perfection. This man could describe a dog taking a crap and make it sound eloquent while still easily understandable. True to what seems to be his signature move, FitzSimmons manages to take a cast of seemingly unrelated characters and slowly weave them together until the bombshell of an ending. His books, while intriguing and thrilling, are something to be savored and studied while experiencing the journey alongside his wacky cast of characters. Once again I’m left twiddling my thumbs wondering how to pass the time until the next book is written because DANG IT FITZSIMMONS you do this everytime! Once again, another well written thriller that will surely keep you guessing until the very last page. Definitely recommended to fans of the series looking for another engaging story featuring our flawed favorite Gibson Vaughn.
*I’d like to thank the author, publisher, and NetGalley for providing my copy in exchange for an honest and fair review. I’d also like to thank Wiley Saichek at Saichek Publicity for providing the copy of Poisonfeather as a giveaway!