BOOK REVIEW: The Extraditionist (Benn Bluestone #1) by Todd Merer

ABOUT THE BOOK:

The Extraditionist Cover
Title:
  The Extraditionist (Benn Bluestone #1)
Author:  Todd Merer
Genre:  Fiction, Legal Thriller
Publishing:  November 1, 2017 (Thomas & Mercer)
Format:  Paperback, 428 pages
Source:  Little Bird Publicity and Thomas & Mercer

“You need four things to tell a story: a beginning, a middle, an end, and you can’t be dead.”

 

MY RATING:  starstarstarstarhalf

 

SYNOPSIS:

When the world’s most notorious cartel bosses get arrested, they call Benn Bluestone. A drug lawyer sharp enough to exploit loopholes in the system, Bluestone loves the money, the women, the action that come with his career…but working between the lines of justice and crime has taken its toll, and he desperately wants out. He’s convinced himself that only an insanely rich client can guarantee him a lavish retirement.

When the New Year begins with three promising cases, Bluestone thinks he’s hit pay dirt. But then the cases link dangerously together—and to his own past. Does the mysterious drug kingpin Sombra hold the key to Bluestone’s ambitions? Or does the key open a door that could bring the entire federal justice system to a screeching halt and net Bluestone a life in jail without parole?

The Extraditionist Bookstagrm

MY THOUGHTS:

Sometimes, I need a good old fashioned kick in the butt by a decent book in a genre that I do actually enjoy but don’t pick up nearly enough to make me realize that reading a variety of books is GOOD for me.  The Extraditionist was a solid reminder of my love of thrillers.

The Extraditionist is an intense debut novel by Todd Merer, wherein his background  as a criminal attorney from Brooklyn who spent a good part of his career defending cartel bosses brings light to our protagonist.

The Extraditionist follows the debaucherous protagonist, Benn Bluestone, a New York City attorney who specializes in extraditions, as he wheels and deals with the world’s most dangerous drug lords.  There are twists and turns and his cases spiraling out of control, but the stakes are high, and Benn is motivated by money.

I truly enjoyed Merer’s writing.  His style is fluid and descriptive, though, at times, too descriptive for my taste.  There is a sound plot at the base of this book, but some of the layers that were added contained an excessive amount of fluff (details, characters, etc.) that didn’t entirely seem necessary, and if you do not pay enough attention, the storyline easily becomes disjointed and muddled.

I was nervous that I could be lost among the unfamiliar drug trafficking lingo and setting in The Extraditionist, but that is partly what Merer takes his time explaining.  I did appreciate it, but it also slowed the pace at the beginning of the book.  I was hit with a LOT of information in the first quarter to third of the book that could quickly overwhelm a reader.  Hang in there, guys…the reading gets much more intense soon!

Candidly, I adored our haughty, sarcastic, corrupt lead.  I looked at Benn Bluestone more like an anti-hero and enjoyed him for what he is.  He does not have redeeming qualities — sorry, not sorry!  If all leads were sugar sweet, I would get bored so simply.  Granted, I would not go near Mr. Bluestone with a 20 foot pole in real life, but as a character in a fictional work, I absolutely loved how Merer defined him.

…if only I could keep up with all of the other characters and enjoy their development as much/effortlessly as I did with Mr. Bluestone.

Overall, I believe Todd Merer is off to something good with The Extraditionist.  As it appears we will be seeing more of Mr. Bluestone (since this is listed as book #1 in his series), I am looking forward to seeing what is to come.  I do recommend this read, but I recommend it to those willing/able to pay close attention because there is a lot going on.  Honestly, you have to be a patient reader to enjoy books like this, but if you give it the time it deserves, it is worth it!

Until next time… xo

*Thanks to Little Bird Publicity and Thomas & Mercer for providing me with a copy of this book. Please note that it, in no way, had an effect on my opinion or review.

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