Critical Mass

Critical Mass

by Steve Martini

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Critical Mass by Steve Martini

Jocelyn "Joss" Cole, a burned-out public defender from L.A., has opted for a quieter life in the San Juan Islands of Washington State. Joss has no significant clients other than a group of commercial fisherman suffering from a strange and serious illness, a condition that doctors cannot diagnose, and which Joss believes has an industrial cause. Then into her office comes Dean Belden, a well-heeled client in search of a lawyer to help him set up a business in the islands. Within days Belden is subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury. Less than an hour after testifying, and before Joss can discover what happened in the secrecy of the grand jury room, Belden dies in a fiery explosion of his float plane on Seattle's Lake Union. Gideon Van Ry is a nuclear fission expert and a scholar in residence at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, California. One of his duties is to update the Center's database, an extensive catalog listing fissionable materials and weapons of mass destruction. Gideon is troubled by the apparent failure to account for two small tactical nuclear devices missing from a storage facility in the former Soviet Union.The two weapons were last seen in packing crates, to be shipped to an American company called Belden Electronics. Gideon has been unable to locate this firm, and now he is left with only one possible lead, the lawyer who incorporated the company-Jocelyn Cole. Fraught with tension and suspense, Critical Mass is Steve Martini at his electrifying best. It is the story of what can happen in a world where private hate and public apathy combine to uncork the sleeping but deadly genie of nuclear terror.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780515126488
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/06/1999
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 215,590
Product dimensions: 4.20(w) x 6.70(h) x 0.96(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Steve Martini worked as a newspaper reporter in Los Angeles and as a capital correspondent at the state house in Sacramento, California. An honors graduate at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Mr. Martini holds his law degree from the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law. He has written widely on the law and politics, having covered both state and federal courts, the state legislature, and the administrations of governors Ronald Reagan and Jerry Brown. In 1984 Martini turned his talents to fiction, quickly earning positions on bestseller lists and garnering both critical and popular praise for his New York Times–bestselling novels, including The Simeon Chamber, Compelling Evidence, Prime Witness, Undue Influence, The Judge, The List, Critical Mass, The Attorney, The Jury, and The Arraignment. Mr. Martini lives on the West Coast.



Date of Birth:

February 28, 1946

Place of Birth:

San Francisco, California


B.A., University of California, Santa Cruz, 1968; J.D., University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, 1974

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Critical Mass 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
PhotoBySki More than 1 year ago
After reading Compelling Evidence, I became hooked on all books Steve Martini. He has quickly become among my very select top 5 authors! Why? Because Steve can tell a story.a great story.but you THINK you know where he's going, but he goes somewhere you never expected. Critical Mass is no exception. I will admit, the story starts out a little confusing.but quickly Steve ties everything all together nice and neat and then you are a fast train to the end. I won't spoil the book for you.but trust me when I tell you that you will not be disappointed. I've yet to be disappointed by a Steve Martini book. This book is not part of the Paul Madrini series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast paced start to end
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eriberto More than 1 year ago
Steven Martine has written great books (The List, The Judge, etc), however, this one tops them all... Great plot with a great twist for a perfect ending... Well done !!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Once I started this one there was no letting up! I just could not seem to put it down. By far one of his most thrilling novel yet.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I agree, this book took a few chapters to get started, but it is one of the best books I've read. It is way better than Martini's other books, which are very good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just finished reading Critical Mass. In the beginning you may not be sure you want to read this book but hang in there! It's a thriller that you won't want to put down. It leaves the reader with the same feeling that the early Grisham's did. I can't understand the reviews that didn't like this one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book is great! Great Story with the great ending. I have when nobody dies in the end.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In Critical Mass, Steve Martini has unfortunately switched from storyteller to ideologue. The result is a severe disappointment to those readers who greatly enjoyed the novelistic skills displayed by Martini in his previous books. In Critical Mass, he is obviously more interested in government-bashing than in plot and character building; and his bashing is both heavy-handed and clumsy. Regardless of the nature of Martini's politics, one can only view with dismay their misdirected injection into what might otherwise have been an engrossing novel. One can only hope that, in his future books, Martini returns to doing what he is good at.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Marvelous. Obviously, not for readers who take a narrow approach to politics or the law, but if you have an understanding of how the federal scheme works, and of the threat of nuclear terrorism, it is a top-notch read. I'm sorry that Martini has not returned to this genre. I hope he does. He's quite good. I have not read his other works, but, from what I've seen of them, he resembles the trite Grisham formula...and a Grisham novel is usually a disappointment, unless you're easily entertained.