Book Critique – Deliver Us From Evil (A. Shaw # 2)

Stars: 3.5 / 5

Recommendation: A thriller with gorier, girttier parts, but metes justice at the end to the monsters causing crimes all over; definitely for a strong heart and mind who can wade through the story-line.

Deliver Us From Evil is the second book in the A. Shaw Series by David Baldacci published in April of 2010. The plot is centered around Shaw and Regina "Reggie" Campion - two covert operatives working for two different independent organizations whose sole purpose is to weed out and hunt down the most notorious criminals and monsters, sometimes hiding under sheep's skins.

A friend of mine loaned me another of David Baldacci book to read; she is the same one who had originally introduced me to Will Robie series by Baldacci. Since I had liked Will Robie series, trusting my friend's judgment on the book again, I picked this one to read as well.

The target is a multi-millionaire Evan Waller who is considered monster, but there was not a thing to prove for any government to take action on him. Both Shaw and Reggie are independently assigned to the case of accosting Evan and making that day his last day on earth. Neither are aware of each other's missions, and yet they strive to achieve their goals.

Having already read the Will Robie series I had a feeling about the direction this series of Baldacci would go. And true to my notion, Baldacci spins another political thriller albeit he uses independent organizations working towards a common goal, and who don’t necessarily belong to a country or government.

I have read some grittier and gorier plots by some of the other authors that focus on the social evils existing around the world, in particular towards fellow humans. In those books, as a reader from the beginning I was sure about the thought process of the antagonist and naturally dislike him/her. However, Baldacci spins a few chapters about the musings of the antagonist, with his view point on why he does what he does. He was so convincing that at one point I almost believed the reasoning, yes, "almost" is the key word. But then in the very next chapter, author snaps the readers out of that "almost believing" state to the real state of the character. Phew! That is some impactful writing, if I may say so.

There is a lot of physics and chemistry involved in some of the conversations, that reeled my head. Yet, they made perfect sense to the plot. As much educating as it was to read the physics and chemistry part of the plot, it equally shuddered me to read the gorier parts, ooh can't imagine how people went through those for real.

I can assuredly say that this is the first book that I actually rushed to the end chapters and read them briefly, "very briefly", just to make sure the characters that I started loving hadn't had an unexpected turn that would haunt me as a reader. I guess I was influenced by the antagonist more than I thought, influenced towards the spectrum of fear and anger blended together.

Very well-written, with fight scenes and battle plans well thought out from both protagonists and antagonist perspective. Definitely unexpected twists and turns along the way, some rather very very surprising to the reader, keeping the plot interesting and gripping. I only wish the ending was a bit more cheery than what the author had shared. 

With such a powerful plot idea that is so much close to what is happening in the real world, one would have expected the author to create more out of the series with Shaw as the lead protagonist. When I noticed that he had only penned two books, and especially after reading the ending, I was so upset that I sent an email to David Baldacci on it. Still waiting for his response. :P

And the ending technically didn’t feel like an ending since so many questions lay there that readers would be dying to know answers to them .That is why I still think that Baldacci should continue this series to give some justice to Shaw and other characters after they have gone through so much. I wish Baldacci either revamps this series or brings these characters back in another series.

A well-written, well-made plot surrounding war crimes and crimes against humanity; and the organizations who hunt the monsters causing these to make the world a little more better place to live in. A story that needs a lot of courage to delve through and a strong heart to keep up with the gorier and grittier parts. A definite pick for strong heart and mind folks.

Spoiler Alerts:

1. Plot reveals:

a. Miles Mallory is the head of the independent organization that Reggie Campion works for. 

b. Reggie Campion frequently visits the grave of one Laura R. Campion who had passed away almost two centuries ago. The author did not provide any connection between Reggie and Laura in this plot at least. 

c. Reggie Campion's past about her family reminded me of a Nora Robert novel, The Obsession, published in 2016. Although the major plot of that book was around the past that Reggie Campion has in this book. Some coincidence huh!

2. Sub-Plots:

a. Frank Wells is Shaw's boss. Katie James is a journalist. There seems to be a history between Shaw and each of them which perhaps has been covered in the first book The Whole Truth. Shaw also had a fiancée, Anna Schmidt, who had passed away. 

3. Grammatical / Factual / Location / Historical / Character Errors:

a. On Pg. 251, Line 7 from bottom, it should be "…got mine and Reggie's…"

b. On Pg. 345, Line 7, it should be "…Neither possibility was…"


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