Top critical review
Hard to believe (spoilers herein)
Reviewed in the United States on August 20, 2021
Too much in this book was too hard to believe. Most glaringly, however, is that X is supposedly a smart and canny operative: Why then is he undertaking all of these attacks with a severe concussion? Other random questions include: Why could he not afford to house Max in one of his safe houses, yet he buys Joey's whole building? Why does he even go into the dog-fighting/old TV station complex? He could have clipped each of those guys off from an external position. Similarly, why does he go into the prison as an inmate? With his and Joey's skills he could have been a lawyer, a guard, a prison hospital worker etc.; or they could have gotten the target to leave the prison on one pretext or another. Come on, this is the same dude who killed the POTUS remotely!!!!! How come going to Bedrock's house wasn't the first line of attack once his involvement was revealed? Why could all of these efforts not wait until he felt better? Why does it take him practically the entire novel to figure out Mia is the prosecuting attorney on the case? If Hurwitz is using the concussion as the basis for all of these unwise decisions, then he just layers stupidity upon stupidity. X is known to have an arsenal of seemingly unlimited skills and resources - this novel ignores totally this and delivers a needlessly complicated plot morass, which is an embarrassment to X's character, and undermines Hurwitz's previously concise and sharply drawn Orphans' landscape. Two stars because I'm already so invested in X and because I still love the ingenuity combined with humanity with which Hurwitz has imbued this character.