My Review of Countdown City by Ben H. Winters @BenHWinters – 2nd in The Last Policeman series
Hank Palace is a guy that continues doing the job he was doing before the world went to Hell, like he’s on autopilot. Formerly a detective for the Concord Police Department, he, along with the rest of his colleagues, were recently let go due to a policy change – one where detectives and police officers are no longer needed to pursue investigations. He can’t even explain his dogged pursuit in a missing person mystery to himself when people ask him why he’s doing what he’s doing until he realizes he’s doing it because he made a promise – the promise to find a woman’s husband. And no matter what’s happening in your life, or how painful fulfilling a promise is, or what’s falling from the sky and will impact the Earth in seventy-seven days, you keep your promise.
Martha Cavatone (Milano), former babysitter and first crush, begs Hank to find her husband Brett. She swears that their marriage was solid and that Brett would never leave and was going to stay by her to the end.
Reluctant at first, Palace begins retracing Brett’s steps in pursuit of the missing husband/provider/protector. Accompanied by Houdini, a bichon frise´ he acquired from the home of a dead drug dealer, his journey takes him up and down the east coast and as he begins to unravel the story like he’s peeling off the layers of an onion. Hank begins to believe Brett is still alive and that the mystery of his leaving is becoming more tangled.
Meanwhile the approximately 3-mile in diameter asteroid traveling through space keeps moving toward its appointed spot on Earth and people are reacting in different ways. But Palace keeps plodding along, rarely thinking about the cosmic rock.
Ya gotta love this guy. I’d want him in my camp should the same catastrophe befall me. I enjoyed the film noir style of book one, The Last Policeman. Ben H. Winters picks up the pace in book two, Countdown City, and you will not be disappointed. I recommend both books and I cannot wait for book three to see if Palace continues on his determined lifestyle.