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    Gone: (Michael Bennett 6) (Michael Bennett) (Paperback) By (author) James Patterson


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    DescriptionForced into hiding from a mass murderer seeking vengeance, Detective Michael Bennett must decide whether to stay and protect his family, or hunt down the man who is hunting them. When Bennett arrested Manuel Perrine, he thought he had brought an end to the drug cartel boss' reign of terror and would get justice for the murder of his best friend. But then, during the trial, Perrine escaped. In a bloody shoot-out, Bennett killed Perrine's wife. Now he wants nothing more than to make Bennett suffer, to make him pay. The whole family are moved to a safe-house in California. But as Perrine's attacks on US soil become more vicious and more daring, it's clear there is a war coming. No one, anywhere, is safe.

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    Marianne Vincent Gone is the sixth book in the Michael Bennett series by American author James Patterson and is, as the five before it, co-written by Michael Ledwidge. It is set some 8 months after the events of I, Michael Bennett, in which the Bennett family had to go into the Witness Protection scheme to hide from Mexican drug cartel boss, Manuel Perrine. Living on a farm in rural California is losing any attraction it may have had, and family members, Bennett himself included, are getting restless and perhaps careless. It seems that Perrine is becoming more audacious than ever, ordering hits on Mafia bosses, competing cartels and unco-operative colleagues, and not only FBI and State police, but also the Military are involved in the hunt for this megalomaniac narco-terrorist. FBI Agent Emily Parker turns up begging Bennett's input in the search for Perrine, and the family are left in the hands of US Marshals as Bennett heads to LA. There, a dramatic takedown fails to net Perrine. This instalment has plenty of action: shootings, toxic gas, attempted kidnapping, underground escape tunnels, ocean rendezvous, hitmen, and torture. There are several exciting climaxes. As usual, the villains are cardboard characters, and people who should know better do some dumb things that endanger loved ones. The most interesting character is an old pothead named McMurphy. The government of the day comes in for a bit of criticism. It must be a strain to remember the details of Bennett's ten children: perhaps Ledwidge could write them down somewhere. Apparently, while Juliana has aged 5 years since the first book, poor Trent has only advanced two; Ricky was already 13 in the last book but is now "going to be thirteen"; readers could be forgiven for thinking that Ledwidge had forgotten all about Bridget, the twin of Fiona, who is mentioned only once by name, on the very last page, even though the other children all get plenty of mentions. Perhaps Ledwidge is just checking if the reader is paying attention? Apart from that, quite a page-turner. by Marianne Vincent

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