Adrenaline (Sam Capra Series #1)

Adrenaline (Sam Capra Series #1)

by Jeff Abbott

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780446575195
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 07/01/2011
Series: Sam Capra Series , #1
Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 11,513
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Jeff Abbott is the New York Times bestselling author of fourteen novels. He is the winner of an International Thriller Writers Award (for the Sam Capra thriller The Last Minute) and is a three-time nominee for the Edgar award. He lives in Austin with his family. You can visit his website at www.JeffAbbott.com.

Read an Excerpt

Adrenaline


By Abbott, Jeff

Grand Central Publishing

Copyright © 2011 Abbott, Jeff
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780446575171

PART ONE

NOVEMBER 14–APRIL 10

“In the flux that defines the world of the illegal, beginnings are often endings and vice versa… Trillions of dollars move around the world outside of legal channels… They ruin the lives of some and create vast empires of profit for others.”

—Carolyn Nordstrom, Global Outlaws

1

ONCE MY WIFE ASKED ME: if you knew this was our final day together, what would you say to me?

We’d been married for all of a year. We were lying in bed, watching the sun begin to shine through the heavy curtains, and I answered her with the truth: anything but good-bye. I can’t ever say good-bye to you.

Two years later, that final day started as most of my days did. Up at five, I drove and parked near the tube station at Vauxhall. I like to use the public housing a few blocks away for my little adventures.

I started the run with a long warm-up in the open, exposed concrete courtyard of the old public building, slow-running in place, gathering pace, elevating my body temperature by a few critical degrees, then took off. You want your muscles and ligaments hot. A brick wall lay directly ahead of me, three feet taller than me. I hit it with a step that launched me upward, my fingers closing on the edge of its top. I pulled myself up with one fluid movement I’d practiced a thousand times before. No hard breathing, no creaking of joints. I tried to move in silence. Silence shows that you’re in control. Over the edge of the wall, running across the ground, and then a vault over a much shorter wall, one-handed, my legs clearing the bricks.

Into the main building. A stairwell, smelling of piss and decorated with a finger of black-and-white graffiti, lay ahead of me. I hit the painted wall with my left foot in a careful jump, using the energy to launch me rightward to the railing at the turn of the stair. A hard move where I’d fallen before, but today, sweet, I landed with care onto the railing, holding my balance, heart pounding, mind calm. Adrenaline thump. I jumped from the railing to an extended steel bar that stretched into the construction site, used the momentum to swing myself over to a gutted floor. The building was being torn apart and redone. I would damage nothing, leave no sign of passage. I might be a trespasser, but I’m not a jerk. I ran to the opposite side of the floor, launched into the air, caught another bar of steel, swung, let go, and hit the ground in a careful roll. The energy from the fall spread across my back and butt rather than jamming in my knees, and I was up and running again, back into the building, looking for a new, more efficient way to enter its spaces. Parkour, the art of moving, gets my adrenaline going while, at the same time, a slow calm creeps over me. Make a misstep and I fall down the brick walls. It is exhilarating and settling all at once.

I made another three passes through the building’s interesting web of space—broken floors, gaping stairwells, equipment—using a mix of runs, vaults, jumps, and drops to find the line—the simplest and most straightforward path through the half-ruined walls, the low brick rises, the empty staircases. Energy burned my muscles, my heart pounded, but the whole time I tried to maintain a distinct and separate calm. Find the line, always the line. Around me, in the distance, I could hear traffic beginning to build, the sky lightening for the new day.

People think that what the British call council housing is an eyesore. It’s all in how you look at it. To a parkour runner the old square buildings are beautiful. Full of planes and walls to run up and bounce off, railings and ledges to walk and jump from, neighbors who don’t call the police at the merest noise.

The last route, I dropped from the second story to the first, grabbing a bar, swinging, letting go in a controlled fall.

“Hey!” a voice yelled at me as I slammed through the air. I hit, rolled, let the energy of impact bleed nicely through my shoulders and bottom. I ended up on my feet and took three steps and stopped.

Not a guard, a teenager, watching me. A morning cigarette perched on his lip. “How do you do that, man?”

“Practice,” I said. “Long, boring hours of practice.”

“Like a spider,” he said, smiling. “My mum and I been watching. She wanted to call the Old Bill. I said no.”

“Thank you.” I really didn’t need the police in my life. Time to find a new place to practice. I waved at my benefactor and decided to cool down with a long, straightforward run. Twenty minutes in a long, looping circle, a normal jogger out for his paces, and I jumped back into my car to drive home. Most Americans living in London don’t have cars. You don’t need them.

I have one for security.

I headed up to our apartment off Charlotte Street, not far from the British Museum. I slipped inside, trying to be quiet, hoping that Lucy was still asleep.

She was up, drinking juice at the small kitchen table, frowning at an open laptop. She glanced at me.

“Good morning, monkey,” she said, putting her gaze back to the laptop. “Out making mischief?”

I’d forgotten to take off the hand coverings I wore to protect my palms on the parkour runs. I could hear the disappointment in her voice.

“Hi.”

“You didn’t fall off a building,” she said.

“No, Lucy.” I poured a glass of juice.

“What a relief. When you miss grabbing the edge of a wall and plummet to an untimely end, I can tell the baby you died getting your morning fix of crazy.”

“The walls aren’t high. I don’t take stupid chances.” Defensive.

“When I’m expecting, Sam, any chance is a stupid one.”

“Sorry. Mostly it was a normal jog.” I took off the palm protectors, stuffed them in my pocket. I went to the fridge and found a cold bottle of water. I took refuge in it, drinking slowly and steadily. Shower, coffee, then a long day at the office. The adrenaline rush was gone for the day.

“Sam?”

“Yeah?”

“I love you. I want you to know that.”

“I know that. I love you, too.” I turned from the refrigerator, looked at her. She was still studying her laptop, her hand perched on the soft fullness of her belly. The baby was seven months along, and I suppose, with the imminence of parenthood, Lucy and I were both more serious these days. Well, she was. I hadn’t yet been able to give up parkour runs, interspersed with my regular miles.

“I wonder if you might find a less dangerous hobby.”

“My job is more dangerous than my hobby.”

“Don’t joke,” she said. Now she looked at me. In her morning rumple, she was beautiful to me, brown hair with auburn highlights, serious brown eyes, a heart-shaped face with a full, red mouth. I loved her eyes the most. “I know you can do your job better than anyone. I’m scared you’ll take a stupid fall doing these runs. I don’t need you with a broken neck with a baby about to be born.”

“Okay. I’ll learn golf.”

She made a face that told me she didn’t take my promise seriously. But she said, “Thank you. Remember, tonight we have dinner with the Carstairs and the Johnsons.”

I smiled. They were her friends, not mine, but they were all nice people, and I knew our regular dinners out in London would become much rarer once the baby arrived. And maybe they knew a golf instructor. “Okay, I’ll be home by five, then.”

“We’re meeting them at six at the tapas bar in Shoreditch. Do you have a big morning?”

“A PowerPoint-heavy one,” I said. “Briefings all day with Brandon and the suits from back home.” I looked at her as she stood to stretch, her hands on the swell of her belly. “But I could cancel. Go to the doctor’s with you.”

“No.”

“Save me from the PowerPoint. Let me go with you and The Bundle.” We kept skirting the discussion of names, so I’d given our imminent child a pseudonym.

“The Bundle.” She patted the top of her swell.

“Actually, I may have to meet you at the restaurant. I might have to go drink a quick pint with the suits after the meetings.”

She laughed and smiled and said, “Oh, such a tough job you have.”

I thought, thank God I don’t have my parents’ marriage. Lucy and I didn’t fight, didn’t glare, didn’t inflict long, painful silences.

“Go and bar-hop without your pregnant wife.” She smiled and closed her laptop. “But not quite yet.”

She came to me and slid her hands up my back. Pregnant women are full of surprises; it’s like living with a breeze that can’t settle on its direction. I loved it. She kissed me with a surprising hunger, almost a ferocity, her belly big between us.

“I’m hot and sweaty and gross,” I said. “I’m a yucky husband.”

“Yes,” she said. “Yes, you are, monkey. And I’m enormous.”

“Yes,” I said. “Yes, you are.” And I kissed her.

When we were done, the sweetest start to that final day, I made us a breakfast of toast, coffee, and juice, then showered, dressed, and went to our office. Before I walked out, I looked back at her, at the breakfast table, and I said, “I love you,” and she said, “I love you.”

Famous last words.



Continues...

Excerpted from Adrenaline by Abbott, Jeff Copyright © 2011 by Abbott, Jeff. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

Charlaine Harris

"Adrenaline lives up to its name. Pure thriller in pace, but Abbott manages to keep the book's heart in the right place. The characters aren't cardboard action figures, but people under incredible stresses and strains. I read it in a big gulp.

Harlan Coben

Adrenaline has everything-relentless action, mind-bending intrigue, and twists and turns you won't see coming. It's exhilarating, and confirms Jeff Abbott as one of the best thriller writers of our time.

Michael Connelly

Panic is a ride down the roaring rapids. Jeff Abbott has put together a hell of a page turner.

Laura Lippman

"This is a wonderful book and the start of one of the most exciting new series I've had the privilege to read. Jeff Abbott has been one of my favorite writers for more than a decade and Sam Capra is now on my short list of characters I would follow anywhere. Adrenaline provides the high-octane pace one expects from a spy thriller, while grounding the action with a protagonist that anyone can root for. Sam Capra is the boy next door — assuming the boy next door to you is a CIA-trained agent who will do whatever is necessary to find and protect his loved ones.

Eric Van Lustbader

"Engaging from the first paragraph, terrifying from the second page, ADREANLINE accomplishes what most modern thrillers can't. It makes us care about its characters even while we're speeding headlong down the ingenious Rabbit Hole of its plot. Well done!

Lee Child

"Panic is Jeff Abbott's best novel yet...an instant classic immediately full of questions-who, what, why, how-that have answers you won't see coming.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Adrenaline 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 259 reviews.
Bluebonnet100 More than 1 year ago
Within the first five pages I could tell this was going to be a great story. I've read Mr. Abbott's books in the past and liked them. This one I loved. Sam Capra is living a normal life, at least as normal as someone working for the CIA can have. Living in London with his wife, Lucy, waiting for the birth of their child. Going to the office, searching for the bad guys, coming home at night, meeting their friends. Pretty routine. Then - BAM! It all changes in 30 seconds. I can't wait for the next in the series.
rpweaw More than 1 year ago
This was an action packed fast easy read. The characters and the story line gripped me from beginning to the end. I can't wait to read the next book to follow Sam on his next mission. I liked that the author did not bog you down with boring details of landscapes and such..just got right to the point and gave you all the visual info you needed to know.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book really grabbed my interest early on, in chapter one. At around the half-way point is where it gets really exciting, though! By the time I got there, I was so anxious to find out what would happen next that I found myself awake until 5:00 AM still reading! Great start on a fresh new series and I can't wait for the next installment!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harriet Klauser, stop ruining the books for everyone!!!
Georgina Connolly More than 1 year ago
Read this if you want a book that you simply can't put down.
Sean_From_OHIO More than 1 year ago
Adrenaline by Jeff Abbott certainly has a fitting title. The book is packed with action and characters in extreme situations making insane choices to keep themselves and others alive. While part of the title comes from the main character’s hobby of parkour, which I think is ridiculous, it fits well. Sam Capra is an innocent CIA Agent framed for a heinous crime. Readers are struggling with Sam as he comes to grip with his life’s massive changes. When he starts to right the wrongs he was saddled with it’s a non-stop thrill ride. While the science involved in the “evil” weapon is a little hokey and the last twist was obvious its still a very good book and leads into many more options. Overall, a fun, fast paced action novel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rread this book in2days the ending left me wanting more sam capra
Christine harris More than 1 year ago
Couldnt put it down...an easy, fast paced read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Outsranding book, hard to put down! Long too, you get your value both in quantity and quality, highly recommended. Bob Nagy
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good reading and fast paced. Reminded me of the earlier "Harry Bosch" series by Michael Connelly books. Looking forward to the next book as well as a continuing series on "Sam Capra".
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Overall the book was very interesting and hard to set down. There is alot of viloence and many people die. Sam capra is a cool character which has many ideas on how to escape and being friends with all sorts of people. The main question in book 1 that i always wanted to find was: did his wife betray him, and the company? Great book 400+ page book with action on every page. Enjoy a great book and relax.
ShellyMW More than 1 year ago
Grabs you on the first page! At the end you want more!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have not read this book as of yet so the low rating I am tired of those reviewers who need to go into detail about the book . I am put off from buying a book because the story is ruined.  I would like to find out for myself it spoils the book, why can't they just say something like the story keeps you guessing or the characters are believable.  I do not want a book report!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good characters. Fast paced. Could be based on actual things going on in the world. Violence. I recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The world must know about a great book !!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series. It is a bit un realistic, as some have pointed out. But it is FICTION. Most movies are hard to believe too. Hope to read a long line of Sam Capra novels. Keep them coming Jeff Abbott.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Exciting, fast paced. Super characters.
Bettle More than 1 year ago
Bit far out at times, but enjoyable
SAGM More than 1 year ago
I was excited to find a new author that I hadn't tried before. Kept my attention until the very end!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Move over Jason Bourne! I loved this book. I have read other Jeff Abbot books, but this was his best so far.
Alfie_65 More than 1 year ago
Great plot and lots of twists and turns. Great reda!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A real page turner. Non stop action.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't know how important reviews are for others, but for the author and for avid readers, reviews often dictate our purchasing choices for writers with whom we are unfamiliar. Why would any person choose to paraphrase the whole book and spoil the suspense for others? These books are called "thrillers, mysteries" for a reason. Don't you remember what book reports were graded on in school? B&N should do a better job of monitoring reviews, pay attention when reviews are flagged (which I do when the medium is misused), and make certain the e-book is readable. Can't you afford to pay someone to monitor reviews for content or to actually read the e-book for quality? Amazon, for example, does not publish reviews instantly and policies are maintained. We certainly pay enough for digital copies of books! If you can't do a better job with this area, then maybe it is time to move to a Kindle! And, PEOPLE, please don't read this genre if you don't expect violence and profanity! Grow up, for God's sake!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book had me on the edge of my seat. I was so into it that I felt as if I WAS the characters themselves, who were so greatly developed. The thrill and action was so extreme and entertaining, I stayed up until 5 AM reading this book until I finished. I recommend this book for everyone. It will not disappoint.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Way too sadistic for me, I love good suspense and love stories but this book has too many twist, too much horrible things in it. Not a single crime is left out of this book, plus these people walk around in hours after being beaten, shot and tasered like it never happened to them. Unrealistic and I know its fiction. I skipped some of the 416 pages but did finish it just wanted to make sure I had the correct bad guy and l did. GJRA