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Trigger City    by Sean Chercover order for
Trigger City
by Sean Chercover
Order:  USA  Can
William Morrow, 2008 (2008)
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Readers met disillusioned newspaper reporter turned private investigator Ray Dudgeon in Sean Chercover's first novel, Big City, Bad Blood. Dudgeon is back with a baffling new case to solve in the second of this fine series, Trigger City. Chicago is the background, obviously described by someone who loves that city.

Joan Richmond is shot by a mentally ill coworker who leaves a confession at the crime scene and then goes home and commits suicide. Cut and dried, right? Not so to Dudgeon. The dead woman's father, retired Army Intelligence Colonel Isaac Richmond, hires Dudgeon to look into his daughter's death, and pays him handsomely to do so.

Dudgeon finds himself enmeshed in matters of secrecy involving America's military contractors. Could they be defrauding the government? Sound familiar? Does to me. Anyway, Dudgeon ends up running for his life, not sure to whom he can turn for help for himself as well as the dead man's widow and child.

Full of suspense and skullduggery, Trigger City proves to be just as good, if not better than Big City, Bad Blood. As is necessary in most good books, humor plays a part in the story. A small one, but it is there. This novel brings up a fictionalized problem that does really exist and makes the reader think about the U.S. government and military and what happens behind the scenes. The power that is used is scary and infuriating.

I look forward to the next adventures of Ray Dudgeon. Author Sean Chercover has held many jobs and so has many experiences to draw on for his plots. Trigger City is a must read.

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