An online marketing consultant, an avid reader of 400 + books a year. Professional reader, reviewer, and blogger. Enjoy ARCs and new releases.
By John Lansing
Series: Jack Bertolino #2
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: 10/20/2014
My Rating: 4 Stars
A special thank you to Gallery Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Sexy Jack (Jack Bertolino and Associates NYPD officer turned LA PI), is back with Book #2 with John Lansing’s Blond Cargo with an action packed crime thriller, with the hanging fate of blond mafia princess.
Vincent Cardona, a mafia boss (a mobster who abuses cigars, drugs, and booze, with a heart of gold) needs a favor, and Jack knew payback was coming. He just did know it would be this soon. He had taken it upon himself to station Peter outside Saint John’s Health Center while his son was drifting between life and death. Cardona’s enforcer had scared off Delgado, and that may have saved his son’s life. The unsolicited good deed was greatly appreciated by Jack and the debt weighed heavily.
The request is to find Angelica Marie Cardona, his only daughter. His wife died giving birth and he raised her. Angelica, beautiful, blond, early twenties, with flawless skin and gray-green eyes (who did not get her good looks from her father). When he moved to LA and she turned thirteen, she did not want anything to do with him. He tried private schools, ballet, horses, and live in help and nothing helped, and he threatened to send her to the nuns. He has not seen his daughter in a month, around the time Jack’s son Chris was in the hospital.
There have been two women (both blonds) murdered, and he has a bad feeling, as she has never disappeared for this length of time. The other girls were the same age and similar features, as Angelica. Money is no object, he wants his daughter found. Jack is taking the case; however, he has no clue what he will be up against.
For a privileged young woman, Angelica does not appear to have extravagant tastes or shopping habits, and her apartment in Beverly Hills is paid in full by her dad. Maybe she was trying to change her persona, since her dad was a mobster. Jack soon discovers that the young, blond, mafia princess has been kidnapped and imprisoned while rich, politically connected men negotiate her value as a sex slave. (A white slavery ring and priceless artifacts).
In the last book, when Jack busted Mateo, he decided it was in the state’s best interest to utilize the man’s connections and talent and he became Jack’s most prolific CI. Since Jack had saved his life, he had given him a second chance, and the man is forever in his debt. After he worked off his prison time, he went to make a legitimate fortune in Miami flipping condos in (near me) North Miami Beach and knew the upside and the dark side of the real estate business. Now Mateo is joining Jack on the hunt and along with Cruz Feinberg, Jack’s new associate.
Chris (from The Devil’s Necktie), Jack’s son, presently attending Stanford on a baseball scholarship-- The two are not getting along these days, because the Columbian drug dealer Jack had taken down a month ago had decided to get personal and had run Chris down in a Cadillac Escalade. One of the main casualties of the assault was Chris’s pitching arm.
Angelica, last seen in Club Martinique interacting with an ex-con, is being held hostage by a stereotypical Iraqi super-villain investor with powerful local and international connections. Angelica prays her message will be found, as she swore on the grave of her mother that she’d do whatever was necessary to stay alive and find a way to punish her captors. Retribution is something the Mafia had always excelled at. In this, Angelica is her father’s daughter. In a race against time, Jack is running out of options on a collision course to save them both!
From multi-billion dollar Malibu mansions to million dollar customized and cigarette boats, billion dollar real estate, sexy cars, designer clothes, Cuban cigars, marinas, women, drugs, murder, cops, crime, gangsters, cartel, sex videos, Miami connections, sex slavery rings, rape, torture, mob, art, and some hot spots in Marina del Rey, Venice Beach and Santa Monica; private compounds, estates on the Pacific, the rich, and Vargus Development Group, are just a few of the mentions of this fast paced suspense action thriller.
I have not had the opportunity of reading the debut, and first in the Jack Bertolino series; however, a few of the characters are back in book two: sexy DDA Leslie (with some sizzling sex scenes; with plenty of fury, sparks, and chemistry), and son Chris, still in pain, taking pills and seeing a neurologist, with a case of PTSD.
With all the action, thrills, and danger, and added bonus with some human interaction with Jack's character (loving him), and his relationship with son, Chris, and love affair with Leslie. Looking forward to reading #1 (The Devil’s Necktie), and hopefully #3 in this riveting series! Fans of James Patterson will devour this series; however, I prefer Lansing's style over Patterson.