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Killer Instinct    by Joseph Finder order for
Killer Instinct
by Joseph Finder
Order:  USA  Can
St. Martin's, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, CD

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* *   Reviewed by David Pitt

Finder, author of the excellent Paranoia and Company Man, returns to the corporate world in this exciting new thriller. Jason Steadman is a sales exec who's stalled out at his company, risen about as high as he's ever going to. When Jason hooks up with Kurt Semko, a former Special Forces officer, he soon finds that the path to promotion is opening up with undue ease.

As usual, Finder keeps things moving at a brisk clip, and I have only one slight quibble with the book: although he's not expressly written as a dolt, Jason would have to be pretty dense not to see what's going on well before Finder allows him to. I mean, if you're going nowhere in your job, and you make friends with a guy who says he wants to help you, and then your rivals start getting fired, or injured, or whatnot, wouldn't you soon make the connection?

By the time Jason figures out what's up, we're thinking: what took you so long? But, because Finder tells such an interesting story, we don't mind that our hero seems a little ... slow. Heck, if he were quicker on the uptake, it might be an awfully short novel. And I have to confess that it was kind of fun, knowing what was going on while Jason was wandering around in a bit of a daze. Maybe that was Finder's plan. In which case my slight quibble becomes another of the book's many virtues.

Read the novel. Make up your own mind.

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