THE LOST ONES
By Ace Atkins
Penguin Group, 2012 ($16.00) Trade paperback.
Reviewed by Rick McMahan
I've read Ace Atkins ever since he started his Nick Travers blues mysteries more than a decade ago. As of late, Atkins has been busy being given the monumental task (and honor) of continuing the late Robert B. Parker's Spencer series. Having such big shoes to fill would be a daunting task, but Ace not only took on the role of writing Spencer, but he also started his own new series about Quinn Colson with the book RANGER.
Atkins newest Quinn Colson novel is THE LOST ONES. This novel starts out with Colson having left the Army to take over as Sheriff of Tibbehah County. Colson spent more than a decade of his life fighting overseas as a tough Army Ranger, and now back home in rural Mississippi he's dealing with a different kind of enemy — not only criminals but political graft and corruption.
THE LOST ONES starts off with two different story lines circling each other — Quinn Colson and his deputies find they are investigating the death of an infant and discover a local woman running an illegal adoption ring for Mexican babies. Then there's a drug cartel that is after a load of guns to ship back to Mexico and the local Tibbehah County residents are ready, willing and able to sell the narcos their guns. Quinn and his Deputies are looking for the fugitive baby trafficker, and an ATF agent comes looking for the baby fugitive as a way to find cartel members buying guns. As always, Ace Atkins populates his book with well thought out characters with depth and texture. For instance, in this book, I came to have a better understanding and compassion for Quinn's sister and her wild side.
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