by John Ramsey Miller

Bantam, 1997, $6.99 (461 pages)

Reviewed by Rick McMahan (1/98)

John Ramsey Miller's first thriller novel, THE LAST FAMILY, is an entertaining story about revenge and redemption. The hero of the novel is Paul Masterson, an ex-DEA agent, who is drawn out of self-imposed exile by the only thing that matters to him-the family he lost. Masterson was once a DEA agent running major investigations in Florida until he and his men were lured into an ambush. The firefight left several agents dead, and Masterson physically disfigured and emotionally mangled. His confidence shattered, he left his family and retreated to the seclusion of a Montana mountain. The man who orchestrated the ambush, ex-government agent Martin Fletcher, escaped from prison and vanished. Now Fletcher is back. He is seeking revenge in the most diabolical way. He is killing the families of the DEA agents who put him in prison.

Knowing that his family is in danger, Masterson returns to civilization track down Fletcher in a game of cat and mouse with the agents' wives and children as the bait.

I enjoyed Ramsey's authorial voice and the way he weaved his tale. I hope that this will be the start of a fine writing career.

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