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Dead Man Switch
     

Dead Man Switch

by Matthew Quirk
 

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"WHEN IT COMES TO QUIRK, I FOLLOW A SIMPLE THREE-STEP PLAN: BUY, CANCEL PLANS, READ." —Gregg Hurwitz, bestselling author of Orphan X and The Nowhere Man

Someone is hunting down America's most elite special ops soldiers—in their homes.

A deadly fall on a rugged stretch of California coast. A burglary gone wrong in

Overview

"WHEN IT COMES TO QUIRK, I FOLLOW A SIMPLE THREE-STEP PLAN: BUY, CANCEL PLANS, READ." —Gregg Hurwitz, bestselling author of Orphan X and The Nowhere Man

Someone is hunting down America's most elite special ops soldiers—in their homes.

A deadly fall on a rugged stretch of California coast. A burglary gone wrong in Virginia. These incidents seem unrelated, but the victims were living undercover, their true identities closely held secrets. They are members of a classified team, the last line of defense against foreign threats. Now, someone is assassinating them, one by one, taking out family members and innocent bystanders to make the deaths seem like accidents.

Captain John Hayes, a special operations legend, has left the military to settle down with his family. But when he pieces together a pattern behind the murders and discovers that his protégée Claire Rhodes, a brilliant assassin, is the prime suspect, he returns to duty to unmask the attackers.

With every success, the killers grow bolder. Their ultimate goal: Lure Hayes and his remaining fellow soldiers to Manhattan, to eliminate them all in a single devastating strike. To save his teammates and thousands of innocent lives, Hayes must find a way to stop a seemingly unstoppable weapon.

Dead Man Switch delivers nonstop twists, turns, and action in a high-stakes thriller about what happens when the fight abroad follows our covert operators home-and their painstakingly constructed double lives are shattered.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
01/09/2017
Special ops legend John Hayes, now retired, gets back on the job once it becomes apparent that someone is systematically killing members of his former squad—the darkest of all military units, Cold Harvest—in Quirk’s dazzling sequel to 2016’s Cold Barrel Zero. Hayes investigates one death after another, all carefully disguised as accidents (an apparent cliff fall in California, a home-invasion robbery gone wrong in Virginia). As he crosses the country, Hayes comes to the unsettling realization that his former protégé, assassin Claire Rhodes, is a prime suspect, though what her motive might be is baffling. Also at the top of the suspect list is Niko Hynd, a high-level Pakistani terrorist, whose operations were seriously degraded by Cold Harvest raids in recent years. Hayes, an incredibly capable, unapologetic rogue, fights the good fight and reveals the secrets of how he’s doing it as he goes. Right up to the tense finale in New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza, Quirk never strikes a dull or off-key note. Agent: Shawn Coyne, Endeavor Agency. (Mar.)
From the Publisher
"Dazzling . . . Right up to the tense finale in New York City's Rockefeller Plaza, Quirk never strikes a dull or off-key note."—Publishers Weekly

"Quirk's deft plotting and superior action scenes are what make the book tick. But the author also has a nice way of getting the most out of his characters and his varied locales without falling back on clichés. An excellent follow-up to Cold Barrel Zero, this is a standout thriller."—Kirkus Reviews

"A fine thriller . . . Quirk is a master at organizing details—smoke, a chill wind, a splash of water—to create suspense. . . . Fans of special-ops thrillers will devour this latest entry in Quirk's fiery action series."—Booklist

"Thriller fans who enjoy a fast-paced, action-packed story with plenty of twists will be rooting for Hayes every step of the way."—Library Journal

"A tour de force. Dead Man Switch turns the intelligence community's 'wilderness of mirrors' into a high-speed racetrack, delivering twist after twist toward a literally explosive conclusion. More than that, Quirk shows us the human cost of living-and dying-on the gray edges of national security, and creates characters whose choices feel powerful and real."—Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of Paranoia and Guilty Minds

"Matthew Quirk is a big-thriller-writing maniac. With his hallmarks of crisp prose, riveting research, and stunning action, he crafts his books so they're nearly impossible to put down. When it comes to Quirk, I follow a simple three-step plan: Buy, cancel plans, read."Gregg Hurwitz, New York Times bestselling author of Orphan X and The Nowhere Man

"Dead Man Switch is an intriguing premise, perfectly executed. Matthew Quirk writes like his heroes operate: no missteps, no mistakes, just nonstop deadly action."—April Smith, author of the Special Agent Ana Grey thrillers

Library Journal
01/01/2017
In Quirk's (Cold Barrel Zero) second John Hayes adventure, members of an elite and secret military unit known as Cold Harvest seem to be having fatal accidents or being randomly murdered. Hayes doesn't feel like these deaths are random. Someone is targeting these anonymous soldiers who operate outside of normal channels to kill secretly those people that the powers that be want dead. Hayes is determined to track down the remaining members of Cold Harvest and save them from whoever is targeting them for death, even if the culprit winds up being one of their own. VERDICT Thriller fans who enjoy a fast-paced, action-packed story with plenty of twists will be rooting for Hayes every step of the way. [See Prepub Alert, 9/26/16.]—Susan Moritz, Silver Spring, MD
Kirkus Reviews
2016-12-26
An underground network of U.S. operatives contracted by the government to kill terrorists has been exposed, leaving the Special Ops and their families vulnerable to foreign assassins.A "human sequel" to the CIA's killer drones, the lethal shooters of the Cold Harvest operation have wiped out terrorist threats, freed kidnapped Americans, and stopped the transfer of nuclear technology. Maintaining the program's ultrasecrecy is so complicated that battle-scarred hero John Hayes must convince even his closest allies that he's sold out and gone to work for the other side. For two years, he was in self-imposed exile overseas, where he was pursued as an enemy of the United States. Now his job becomes even more perilous when Hynd, a German baddie for hire in possession of the home addresses of Cold Harvest's agents, begins having them eliminated. He's out for vengeance for Israeli intelligence's U.S.-backed killing of his father, a nuclear engineer who worked for the Egyptians. Hayes finds himself pitted against not only Hynd, but also Carol Duncan (real name: Claire Rhodes), an assassin Hayes mentored himself. Traumatized by the killing of her husband in a car fire, she's emotionally fragile, on the run—and may not be working on the same side as Hayes. Quirk's deft plotting (beware the explosion awaiting in Manhattan!) and superior action scenes are what make the book tick. But the author also has a nice way of getting the most out of his characters and his varied locales without falling back on clichés. An excellent follow-up to Cold Barrel Zero (2015), this is a standout thriller.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316259231
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
03/21/2017
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
358,051
Product dimensions:
6.25(w) x 9.50(h) x 1.00(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Matthew Quirk studied history and literature at Harvard College. After graduation, he joined The Atlantic and spent five years at the magazine, reporting on a variety of subjects, including crime, private military contractors, the opium trade, terrorism prosecutions, and international gangs. Quirk's bestselling first novel, The 500, is currently in development as a major motion picture. He lives in San Diego.