The Informationist (Vanessa Michael Munroe Series #1)

The Informationist (Vanessa Michael Munroe Series #1)

4.0 296
by Taylor Stevens
     
 

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Governments pay her.
Criminals fear her.
Nobody sees her coming.

Vanessa “Michael” Munroe deals in information. After escaping a traumatic childhood in lawless central Africa, she is now sought after by corporations, heads of state, and private clients who can afford her unique brand of expertise.
When a Texas oil

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Overview

Governments pay her.
Criminals fear her.
Nobody sees her coming.

Vanessa “Michael” Munroe deals in information. After escaping a traumatic childhood in lawless central Africa, she is now sought after by corporations, heads of state, and private clients who can afford her unique brand of expertise.
When a Texas oil billionaire hires her to find his daughter who has vanished in Africa, Munroe finds herself back in the darklands she once knew so well, fighting mysterious forces determined to keep the fate of the missing girl a secret. If she has any hope of getting out of the jungle alive, Munroe must finally face up to the demons of the past she’s tried for so long to forget.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An irresistible, gorgeously written thriller....impossible-to-put-down....Hollywood, let the casting wars begin."—The Dallas Morning News

“Extraordinary….No one has written a more exhilarating, adroit, and stylish debut for a suspense series since Raymond Chandler introduced Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep back in 1939."—TheDailyBeast.com

"A globe-trotting thriller. . . . The Informationist is an accessible, crisply told tale."—NYTimes.com

"One can't help but think that Munroe and Salander are lone wolves who, if they ever had a chance to meet, might discover they are really part of the same hunting pack...Stevens...writes with the confidence of one who knows she's hit on a winning series character who has the world at her beck and call."Los Angeles Times

"The Informationist is a remarkable thriller; intense and heartbreaking, with a chilling, killer climax."- Associated Press

"In the wake of the stunning success of Stieg Larsson's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo comes a thriller by an American writer whose protagonist is drawing comparisons to Lisbeth Salander. The good news: Vanessa Munroe, the woman at the center of The Informationist, Taylor Stevens' debut novel, lives up to the hype. Best of all, Munroe evokes the spirit and intelligence of the gutsy, damaged Salander, but she's far from derivative...Much will be made of the similarities between Munroe and Salander. But in some ways, Munroe's brooding personality and her ability to blend in to her surroundings bring to mind the provocative Jason Bourne. Thank goodness a sequel to this fiery novel is in the works."—USA Today

"Vanessa Munroe is the book world’s newest tough-girl action hero."- New York Post

"A Dazzling new thriller...The Informationist is Steven's first novel but it reads as if she's already a master of the genre."—New York Daily News 

"Stevens' debut novel, The Informationist [is] an international thriller featuring a most unusual hero."Fort Worth Star-Telegram

"The star of this novel- an androgynous espionage agent named Vanessa Munroe- boasts a mysterious past and impressive survival skills."- Entertainment Weekly 

"Taylor Stevens in her first novel has achieved the gripping story telling technique of many acclaimed authors."- Paramus Post

"The Informationist pushes every one of my buttons: exotic locale, sassy and competent protagonist, crisp dialogue and nonstop action. A fine debut—can’t wait for the sequel!"—Book Page, Bruce Tierney

"Stevens’ debut novel is as compelling as her actual back story. Like Vanessa Munroe, a heroine haunted by her hijacked childhood, Stevens was raised all over the world in a religious cult. But the similarity ends there in this breathless, international thrill ride as Vanessa lies, kills and uses her incredible gift for getting what she wants. But underneath all the action is an even more powerful story of a woman trying to make peace with her personal demons."—Family Circle, Darcy Jacobs

"Stevens’s blazingly brilliant debut introduces a great new action heroine, Vanessa Michael Munroe, who doesn’t have to kick over a hornet’s nest to get attention, though her feral, take-no-prisoners attitude reflects the fire of Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander…. Thriller fans will eagerly await the sequel to this high-octane page-turner."—Publishers Weekly (Starred, boxed review)

"Stevens has penned a fast-paced, gripping, edgy mystery with a heroine whom even Lisbeth Salander would admire."—Library Journal (Starred)

“Dazzling…Munroe is a model of an emerging action heroine: like Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander, not a guy in a girl suit but not one to whimper in the corner, either.”—Booklist
 
"A riveting procedural, and a multi-dimensional thriller, with a heroine that hooks you from her first appearance."—OpenLetters.com

"An utterly smashing debut, starring an unforgettable heroine who could go toe to toe with Lisbeth Salander—and claw her way on top. One of the best thrillers of the year!"—Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author of ICE COLD

"With its break-neck pacing set against the simmering violence of Central Africa, THE INFORMATIONIST is a thriller of the highest caliber. Michael Munroe is a heroine you’ve never seen before—a shape-shifter who’s sharp, fast, and deadly, but still vulnerable to her own demons. Powered by intricate plotting that leads to a climax on a grand scale, this novel announces Taylor Stevens as a writer to watch."—Colin Harrison  

"A turbo-charged debut with a protagonist as deadly as she is irresistible. With THE INFORMATIONIST Taylor Stevens has crafted a thriller that’s smart, sexy, fast-paced—and impossible to put down."
—Vince Flynn

"A terrific thriller with piercing tension, chest-tightening adventure, and a one-of-a-kind heroine I’ve continued to think about long after finishing the last page.  Taylor Stevens is a born storyteller. I couldn’t put THE INFORMATIONIST down."
—Michael Palmer, author of The Last Surgeon

"Stevens debuts with a tightly written thriller woven around an uncommon heroine with a knack for putting facts together and coming up with the right answers...the writing is stellar, the heroine grittier than Lara Croft and the African setting so vivid that readers can smell the jungle and feel the heat—a gifted debut with much promise."—Kirkus

 



Publishers Weekly
Stevens's blazingly brilliant debut introduces a great new action heroine, Vanessa Michael Munroe, who doesn't have to kick over a hornet's nest to get attention, though her feral, take-no-prisoners attitude reflects the fire of Stieg Larsson's Lisbeth Salander. Nine years have passed since Munroe, the daughter of American missionaries, escaped Cameroon at age 15 after a violent incident. She's forged a new life in Texas as an "informationist," a person who specializes in gathering information about developing countries for corporations. Munroe's best friend, marketing consultant Kate Breeden, refers her to Miles Bradford, a high-stakes security pro, who believes she's the perfect choice to help Houston oilman Richard Burbank find his adopted daughter, Emily, who vanished four years earlier at age 18 while vacationing in west central Africa. Munroe returns to Africa, where she reconnects with her ex-boyfriend, Francisco Beyard, a sexy drug- and gun-running businessman, who assists in the dangerous search for Emily. Thriller fans will eagerly await the sequel to this high-octane page-turner. (Mar.)
Library Journal
In Stevens's debut novel, Vanessa Munroe's current case might be her last. Having spent her life distancing herself from her sordid childhood in Africa, Munroe has based her career on the skills she acquired there. She is an informationist and linguist with the ability to blend into any country and obtain the knowledge sought by her high-paying clients. Her current client is a distraught father whose daughter, Emily, vanished four years ago in Africa. After Emily's safari group finished its tour, she decided to stay on to travel more with two men she met on the tour. Of the three, only one returned. Emily disappeared, and the last man who saw her now resides in a mental institution. Munroe is intrigued by what previous investigators might have missed, but she is unprepared for what awaits her in Africa. VERDICT Stevens has penned a fast-paced, gripping, edgy mystery with a heroine whom even Lisbeth Salander would admire. Recommended for all contemporary thriller fiction fans who like thrillers similar to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 11/1/10.]—Susan O. Moritz, Montgomery Cty. P.L., MD
Kirkus Reviews

Stevens debuts with a tightly written thriller woven around an uncommon heroine with a knack for putting facts together and coming up with the right answers.

Vanessa Michael Munroe is both beautiful and androgynous at the same time. A chameleon by nature, she is Munroe to some, the boy Michael to others and Nessa to a very select few. Munroe hires herself out to glean information for international businesses. She has an encyclopedic and logical mind that stores, sorts and processes information. She can pass for a man or woman, whichever suits her purposes, and most important of all, she has a facility for languages that once sent the CIA calling to recruit her. It's this ability to pick up a language after a short exposure that makes her adversaries underestimate her. That, and of course, her violent past, which also gives her a hard edge, as well as the skills to kill without remorse or second thought. Munroe is hired by oil tycoon Richard Burbank to find out what happened to his stepdaughter, Emily, who disappeared in West Central Africa four years ago. Burbank sends along a babysitter, Miles Bradford, to help Munroe and report back to him. Munroe resents Bradford; she grew up in this part of Africa and not only speaks the dialects but also understands the geography, culture and politics. Still, the money that's offered is interesting and Munroe likes a challenge, so she takes the case, and plunges into the heat, chaos and treachery of countries run by dictators and greed. For a while the pair seems to be on the right track, but soon things go very wrong and Munroe finds herself facing her past and having to make a choice that she doesn't want to contemplate. When it comes down to the pivotal moment, Munroe won't know whom to trust and whom to kill.

Stevens' novel wanders a little, particularly at the end, but the writing is stellar, the heroine grittier than Lara Croft and the African setting so vivid that readers can smell the jungle and feel the heat—a gifted debut with much promise.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307717108
Publisher:
Crown/Archetype
Publication date:
10/18/2011
Series:
Vanessa Michael Munroe Series, #1
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
346,885
Product dimensions:
5.28(w) x 7.98(h) x 0.72(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"An irresistible, gorgeously written thriller....impossible-to-put-down....Hollywood, let the casting wars begin."—The Dallas Morning News

“Extraordinary….No one has written a more exhilarating, adroit, and stylish debut for a suspense series since Raymond Chandler introduced Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep back in 1939."—TheDailyBeast.com

"A globe-trotting thriller. . . . The Informationist is an accessible, crisply told tale."—NYTimes.com

"One can't help but think that Munroe and Salander are lone wolves who, if they ever had a chance to meet, might discover they are really part of the same hunting pack...Stevens...writes with the confidence of one who knows she's hit on a winning series character who has the world at her beck and call."Los Angeles Times

"The Informationist is a remarkable thriller; intense and heartbreaking, with a chilling, killer climax."- Associated Press

"In the wake of the stunning success of Stieg Larsson's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo comes a thriller by an American writer whose protagonist is drawing comparisons to Lisbeth Salander. The good news: Vanessa Munroe, the woman at the center of The Informationist, Taylor Stevens' debut novel, lives up to the hype. Best of all, Munroe evokes the spirit and intelligence of the gutsy, damaged Salander, but she's far from derivative...Much will be made of the similarities between Munroe and Salander. But in some ways, Munroe's brooding personality and her ability to blend in to her surroundings bring to mind the provocative Jason Bourne. Thank goodness a sequel to this fiery novel is in the works."—USA Today

"Vanessa Munroe is the book world’s newest tough-girl action hero."- New York Post

"A Dazzling new thriller...The Informationist is Steven's first novel but it reads as if she's already a master of the genre."—New York Daily News 

"Stevens' debut novel, The Informationist [is] an international thriller featuring a most unusual hero."Fort Worth Star-Telegram

"The star of this novel- an androgynous espionage agent named Vanessa Munroe- boasts a mysterious past and impressive survival skills."- Entertainment Weekly 

"Taylor Stevens in her first novel has achieved the gripping story telling technique of many acclaimed authors."- Paramus Post

"The Informationist pushes every one of my buttons: exotic locale, sassy and competent protagonist, crisp dialogue and nonstop action. A fine debut—can’t wait for the sequel!"—Book Page, Bruce Tierney

"Stevens’ debut novel is as compelling as her actual back story. Like Vanessa Munroe, a heroine haunted by her hijacked childhood, Stevens was raised all over the world in a religious cult. But the similarity ends there in this breathless, international thrill ride as Vanessa lies, kills and uses her incredible gift for getting what she wants. But underneath all the action is an even more powerful story of a woman trying to make peace with her personal demons."—Family Circle, Darcy Jacobs

"Stevens’s blazingly brilliant debut introduces a great new action heroine, Vanessa Michael Munroe, who doesn’t have to kick over a hornet’s nest to get attention, though her feral, take-no-prisoners attitude reflects the fire of Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander…. Thriller fans will eagerly await the sequel to this high-octane page-turner."—Publishers Weekly (Starred, boxed review)

"Stevens has penned a fast-paced, gripping, edgy mystery with a heroine whom even Lisbeth Salander would admire."—Library Journal (Starred)

“Dazzling…Munroe is a model of an emerging action heroine: like Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander, not a guy in a girl suit but not one to whimper in the corner, either.”—Booklist
 
"A riveting procedural, and a multi-dimensional thriller, with a heroine that hooks you from her first appearance."—OpenLetters.com

"An utterly smashing debut, starring an unforgettable heroine who could go toe to toe with Lisbeth Salander—and claw her way on top. One of the best thrillers of the year!"—Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author of ICE COLD

"With its break-neck pacing set against the simmering violence of Central Africa, THE INFORMATIONIST is a thriller of the highest caliber. Michael Munroe is a heroine you’ve never seen before—a shape-shifter who’s sharp, fast, and deadly, but still vulnerable to her own demons. Powered by intricate plotting that leads to a climax on a grand scale, this novel announces Taylor Stevens as a writer to watch."—Colin Harrison  

"A turbo-charged debut with a protagonist as deadly as she is irresistible. With THE INFORMATIONIST Taylor Stevens has crafted a thriller that’s smart, sexy, fast-paced—and impossible to put down."
—Vince Flynn

"A terrific thriller with piercing tension, chest-tightening adventure, and a one-of-a-kind heroine I’ve continued to think about long after finishing the last page.  Taylor Stevens is a born storyteller. I couldn’t put THE INFORMATIONIST down."
—Michael Palmer, author of The Last Surgeon

"Stevens debuts with a tightly written thriller woven around an uncommon heroine with a knack for putting facts together and coming up with the right answers...the writing is stellar, the heroine grittier than Lara Croft and the African setting so vivid that readers can smell the jungle and feel the heat—a gifted debut with much promise."—Kirkus

 



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