Cover Image: The Edge

The Edge

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We chose a path almost no one else does. We're going to risk our lives to protect our country and way of life. We chose the most honorable path and also the most dangerous. It's a selfless of sacrifice in a country that routinely worships individually over the collective.

Travis Devine ex military now working privately for the government in secret missions is asked by his boss for a personal favor. The favor takes him to Maine where he is greeted by the small town with big secrets. The mission is find who killed CIA operative Jenny Sikwell and why. Was it for the secrets she knew. Her computer and phone are missing which leaves the government scrambling and worried.

Devine is focused in every turn. Always thinking ahead all scenarios and outcomes. He has several confrontations that lead Devine to follow the evidence. The people of Jenny's small town including her siblings brother and sister do not seem to know why she was in town. It is like pulling teeth to get the truth from these people.

I enjoy a good thriller and this one fit the bill. It connected the dots and allowed the reader to "solve" who done it. A thriller with twists and turns always involve the motive and the how to and it was well played. I welcomed the love interest for Devine and I thought it was a good fit. It made it more personal for him to find out exactly what happened and why. I also like that there is going to be another book along the way.

A special thank you to Grand Central Publishing and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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Another good David Baldacci book, which I read in one setting. This one had a good plot, good characters and a good setting. I liked the descriptions of the Maine coast and the hardships of lobster fishing. I also liked the character of Travis Devine. I missed his first appearance, and have ordered it. I hope to see more of him. I did not have it all figured out before the end, and would highly recommend this to anyone who loves a good mystery. I received this from NetGalley and was under no pressure for a positive review.

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Baldacci comes out swinging from page one and doesn’t stop until the end. This is only the second book in the 6:20 series and I’m already a fan of the new series. This book will definitely keep you on “The Edge!”

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Published by Grand Central Publishing on November 14, 2023

Small town secrets are at the heart of David Baldacci’s latest Travis Devine thriller. I occasionally roll my eyes at all the tough guy trappings in tough guy thrillers, but I give Baldacci credit for telling a plausible and reasonably exciting story that incorporates thrills without the superhuman stunts that mar so many entries in the tough guy subgenre.

Jenny Silkwell was a CIA agent who recently earned high level access to the CIA’s resources. She returned to her hometown in Maine after explaining to her mother that she needed to take care of “unfinished business.” Her trip ended when she was shot in the head. Her body apparently tumbled over a cliff and landed on the rocky shore. An aging widower with mobility problems told the police that he spotted the body while walking in the rain. The police managed to retrieve it before it was washed out to sea.

The reader quickly learns that Jenny’s sister Alex was assaulted fifteen years earlier. Perhaps Jenny’s unfinished business relates to that assault. Alex suffers from situational amnesia that prevents her from identifying her assailant, although she replays the assault in her dreams. Blocking such critical information for fifteen years (even though the attacker’s name is just on the tip of her tongue) is improbable but convenient to the plot. I suppose every thriller is entitled to have one element that strains credibility.

Jenny’s father is hospitalized. He was a military officer turned senator whose friends include Travis Devine’s boss. Devine works for one of those off-the-books clandestine agencies that thriller writers are always inventing. His boss tasks him with investigating Jenny’s death. Devine immediately determines that (1) the story told by the guy who happened upon the body doesn’t make sense, and (2) the police theory about how Jenny was shot isn’t consistent with the trajectory of the bullet that killed her. That the police didn’t take note of these facts means (1) they are incompetent small town cops or (2) they would prefer that the truth not be revealed or (3) both.

Given her job, Jenny might have been killed by foreign adversaries. Devine begins the novel by killing a foreign hit team (apart from a young woman who escapes) and encounters more foreign assassins as the story unfolds, but he suspects that Jenny was killed by locals because of the “unfinished business” she was trying to resolve.

The story follows Devine as he questions nearly everyone in town, many of whom might have something to do with Alex’s assault and/or Jenny’s death and/or a coverup of one or both of those events. Notable characters (who might also be suspects) include the widower who found Jenny’s body, his plucky granddaughter (whose parents died in a mysterious fire), Jenny’s business-minded brother, a couple of local (and one not-so-local) cops, and members of a family that operates the local funeral home, including the town doctor/coroner. More deaths ensue as Devine onducts his investigation.

As is typical of thrillers in this subgenre, Devine does a lot of tough-guysplaining about guns and ammunition and military training. He also explains how to break yourself free from duct tape and zip ties and the best ways to disable an opponent (going for the throat has been a go-to move for a few years now). All of this has been covered in so many tough guy novels that it would be better for characters just to execute their moves rather than wasting words explaining why they’re doing it, but that might shortchange readers who get excited when they read about guns and fighting. Still, most readers don’t need a textbook that covers the basics of being a tough guy. I was more interested in a lobsterman who lobstermansplained the negative impact that global warming is having on lobsters.

Baldacci boosts the word count by recounting Devine’s memories of West Point (where outstanding men learned to do their very best) and his days helping CID investigate crimes (where most of the rape accusations against soldiers proved to be false because warriors are honorable men). Devine’s military boosterism probably plays well with much of the audience for tough guy thrillers, but it becomes a bit wearing, given its disconnect from the real world.

An artistic character opines that most men are sad because they can’t live up to society’s expectations of man as Rambo. That opinion fits nicely within the subgenre’s theme that tough guys are superior to everyone else and puny little girly men all wish they were tough guys.

The story is complex without becoming confusing, although the reader might be challenged to keep track of characters and their relationship to each other. Fortunately, one of the bad guys lives long enough after being shot at the end of the story to give a long-winded confession that explains all the details Devine hadn’t yet deduced. Thank the gods for long-winded confessions that villains love to make at the end of thrillers. Readers would be so confused if they didn’t save the day.

Setting aside my reservations about Baldacci's tough guy and military tropes, I recommend The Edge to thriller fans. Baldacci maintains a good pace, sets up a couple of interesting mysteries, and delivers the action that thrillers require.


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I was given this book by NetGalley for an honest review-
Baldacci never disappoints!
A CIA agent is murdered and Travis is sent to retrieve her laptop and phone which are full of state secrets, and hopefully solve the murdered.
What he finds is a town full of secrets and people wanting to keep their secrets hidden and some who want him dead. Can he solve the murder and stay alive?

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The Edge is another terrific thriller from the master, David Baldacci.

A former Ranger, Travis Devine, is working for the government in various shady projects. His latest assignment is to investigate the murder of CIA agent Jenny Silkwell in a rural coastal Maine town. The agent’s phone and laptop are both missing and may contain top secret information. During his investigation, Travis finds a town mired in both history and secrets. Could a series of earlier deaths be connected to Jenny’s murder? Who is trying to kill Travis? Is it Jenny’s murderer? Or could it be connected to one of Travis’ past cases?

I look forward to reading Mr. Baldacci’s books because they never disappoint. The Edge is no exception. It is compelling reading that you won’t be able to put down. It is also a great choice for armchair detectives. The suspects are as plentiful as the red herrings. 5 stars and a favorite!

Thanks to Grand Central Publishing and NetGalley for a digital review copy of the book.

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This second book in the Travis Devine thriller series did not disappoint. Interesting setting and characters and nice plot line. I enjoyed my interview with David on Charlotte Readers Podcast that will release in January.

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Master storyteller David Baldacci returns with my 'favorite leading man,' Travis Devine, following The 6:20 Man #1 (5 stars) with THE EDGE #2 —and true to its title, this riveting whodunit suspense thriller will have you on the edge-of-your-seat from the first page to the last, anxiously awaiting the next in the series!

THE EDGE is an impressive, satisfying, INTENSE, high-octane, action-packed—entertaining, electrifying suspense crime thriller mystery whodunit! Baldacci showcases his star power, from twisty complex plots to keep you guessing, and a cast of intriguing, multi-generational, well-developed characters make this a Top Book of 2023!

The novel grabs you immediately on a train with some action scenes on a ride between Geneva and Milan as they are about to go through a tunnel. Travis Devine knows there are assailants on board. He is ready and prepared and takes them on but leaves a woman, a loose thread that may come back to haunt (hopefully in the #3 series).

Travis was recruited to serve in the Office of Special Projects under the massive bureaucratic dome of Homeland Security.

New mission, Putnam, Maine:
Travis' handler, Emerson Campbell, delivers his next assignment. A CIA operative, Jenny Silkwell, was found shot to death in Putnam, Maine, a small town outside of Bangor. Her dad, Curtis, was the senior US senator from Maine—a long line of wealth and prestige. She was murdered four days earlier.

They think there is suspicious activity, and they have not been able to locate her CIA-issued laptop or phone. The family is special to Campbell as he was a friend of the Senator, now on his deathbed.

Travis Devine goes in with full credentials, pretending to be an investigator with Homeland Security. It is hard for Travis to comprehend the lack of investigative skills from the likes of this small rural town investigation consisting of an Andy Griffith/Barney Fife type law enforcement (Chief of Police Harper and Sergeant Wendy Fuss—that asks no questions and believes its own never could do any harm). Are they clueless or pretending to be?

At first, Travis is still determining if he possesses all the investigative skills; however, soon he learns he does. He is sharp and sees things others do not. And what a maze of dark secrets and puzzles! The dangers here are often as bad as the battlefield.

The novel revolves around three Putnam families:
~The Stikwells
~The Palmers (Earl/Bertie & family)
~The Bings

Generations of these well-known Putnam families will connect in ways you cannot imagine. From tragedy, unexpected deaths, and dark secrets that go back years—they want to stay buried until Travis Devine enters as the past and present collide. The closer he gets to the truth, his life is on the line.

The small-knit community is full of dark secrets going back generations. From the Bings (former Sheriff now retired in Naples, FL) on his salary? And the mysterious Bings in the funeral business (Bing & Sons) and the medical examiner (Dr. Francoise Guillaume). The family has plenty of money and control. What are they hiding, and how are the Stikwells, Palmers, and their tragedies connected?

Next, we have Jenny's family. The father, Senator, is dying in Hospice, and her mother, Clare, lives in DC and has remarried to a wealthy man. She said her daughter said she had some unfinished business in Putnam before she was murdered. Did she mean personal or business?

Jenny's brother Dak owns a tattoo parlor, has a shady past, and has invested in local businesses.

Alex, the younger sister, a beautiful, highly talented artist and a recluse, teaches art at the local school and has a troubled past of fifteen years ago when she was a teen. Devine will ultimately be attracted to Alex. She has lost her memory of what happened fifteen years ago that may be connected to the case.

Alex and Dak live in the Gothic-style mansion (Jocelyn Point) handed down from family generations past. The Bing brother, Fred and sister, Francoise (funeral home owners) also live in a vast mansion (more significant than the former). Both homes are almost another character in the novel that has been handed down from family.

The ultimate task is for Devine to determine if Jenny's death was due to her job as a CIA agent or if it relates to her personal life and someone in Putnam they knew. How are these families connected?

What a thrill ride! The author is at the TOP OF HIS GAME! Conspiracies, corruption, secrets, blackmail, and murder!

A long-time fan of the author, having read all his series; however, the 6:20 Man Series is my absolute FAVORITE! The author has masterfully created Travis Devine, which is prime for the big or small screen. PLEASE!

I did not know how the author could top the first in the series (loved); however, he DOES INDEED —like a rock star on steroids! Baldacci pulls out all the stops, creating his best series yet with a main character that is highly relatable and a show-stopper!

Wow! Travis has the patience of Job— dealing with the incompetent local authorities in a small town with a bundle of dark secrets and coverups. How are they all connected? With a list of suspects, you will be shocked at how all the complex puzzle pieces fit together.

THE EDGE is one of Baldacci's best! I loved the e-book so much that I purchased the hardcover copy and the audiobook (always a pre-order) narrated by Zachary Webber (fav), Erin Cottrell, Will Collyer, Erin Bennett (fav), and Tiffany Smith for a highly entertaining listening experience!

Please do not let this series end! I loved Devine and the small-town mystery. I also hope we see Travis & Alex again in the future! I cannot wait to see what comes next for Travis. I am in for the long haul—I LOVE him!

Highly recommend!

Thanks to Grand Central Publishing and NetGalley for an advanced review copy.

Blog Review Posted @
@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks
Pub Date: Nov 17, 2023
My Rating: 5 Stars ++
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The Edge, by David Baldacci, is the second installment in the authors 6:20 Man. Former Ranger Captain Travis Devine spent his time in the military preparing to take on any scenario, followed by his short-lived business career chasing shadows in the deepest halls of power, so his analytical mind makes him particularly well-suited for complex, high-stakes tasks. Taking down the world’s largest financial conspiracy in the previous installment proved his value, and in comparison, this case looks straightforward. Except small towns hold secrets and Devine finds himself an outsider again.

It has been six months since Travis Devine, former Army Ranger Captain, was given an ultimatum to work for the US government or face the consequences of his actions in Afghanistan. 6 months in, and it seems as though Travis as been successful. So successful, that adversaries who likely work for the company that Devine took down in Geneva, are now sending mercenaries to try and kill him. It won't be the first time, nor the last that these people try to kill Devine who has all the necessary skills to survive.

When CIA operative Jenny Silkwell is murdered in rural Maine, government officials have immediate concerns over national security. Her laptop and phone were full of state secrets that, in the wrong hands, endanger the lives of countless operatives. In need of someone who can solve the murder quickly and retrieve the missing information, the U.S. government, by way of Retired two-star General Emerson Campbell who is now Travis boss, sends Devine to Putnam, Maine to look into Jenny's murder.

So, playing the part of a special investigator for Homeland Security, Devine tries to sift through the small town politics, and a small town that is steep in mystery, and people dying mysteriously. Devine's only road to solve the mystery starts with Jenny's brother Dak Silkwell, and her sister Alexandra (Alex) Silkwell. Alex is a brilliant artist who suffered a traumatic experience 15 years ago that has left her without important memories. Dak, meanwhile, is chasing capitalism by diving into a strange market hoping to draw investors and their money to town.

Devine's job becomes much harder when he mercs arrive in town and try to kill him. To make matters worse, it seems as though what happened to Alex 15 years ago, might have lead to a serious of strange and unsolved deaths from people of one particular family. Could it be that Jenny's coming back home to Putnam was the result of her own off book investigation? Could it be that Jenny found out what really happened 15 years ago, and the person who left Alex for dead, has now added yet another body to their resume?

*Thoughts* This is one of those books where you really don't have to suspend reality in order to enjoy the book. The action from the first page was done really well. The mystery into what happened to Alex, as well as Jenny, was sussed out so that you weren't sure if the local Sheriff was involved, or a half dozen other people who could have played a part in numerous innocent people being dead. Devine also has to protect his own butt from possible moles in the organization he now works for.

Devine gets drawn to Alex and the reason is understandable. They are both trying to find peace after traumatic events. I think it is fair to say that the open hostility that Travis first faces upon arrival in Putnam is realistic. There are few people in this country who actually trust agents of the government for doing the right thing, and not burying the truth before the mystery can be solved. The book does end on a cliffhanger ending which gives hope that we get another adventure out of Travis.

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The second book in this series although it could be read as a standalone. Travis Devine is sent to Maine to look into the murder of a CIA operative Jenny Silkwell. He tries to work with locals but there are a lot of small town secrets involving the family of Jenny. It was a book that was hard to put down and there was a little teaser at the end. So I’m sure we will see more of Devine.

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The Edge is the second book in The 6:20 Man series by David Baldacci. Travis Devine is back! He is tasked by handlers to solve the murder of a CIA agent who knew America's dirty secrets. Government officials have immediate concerns over national security. Travis Devine heads to a small coastal town in Maine where the locals have trusted each other their whole lives and strongly distrust any outsider.

I love a mystery with lots of suspects and a main character I can root for. Travis Devine has no idea who to trust but tries his best to blend in. His tactics are sharp and calculating showcasing his army ranger background. Baldacci does a good job of keeping the mystery close to the vest until the ending pages in this series. I just wish with each chapter that the suspense built to match Travis Devine's characteristics.

The Edge was nowhere near as fast-paced as the first book of series. The 6:20 Man was a realistic deep dive into dark finance at its finest. I have waited for this follow-up novel for over a year and it's finally arrived on my Kindle. I hurriedly finished other books so I could begin reading this. My hopes were up so I am a bit let down; however, I still recommend it. The Edge is good read but missed that edge, pun all the way intended.

Happy Pub Week, David Baldacci! The Edge is available now.

Disclaimer: An advance copy was received directly from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Opinions are my own and would be the same if I spent my hard-earned coins. ~LiteraryMarie

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The second book in the 6:20 Man series, although this book can be read as a standalone. Travis Devine is back and is specifically asked to take a look at the murder of CIA operative Jenny Silkwell when she visited her home town. They want him to retrieve her devices and determine if her murder had anything to do with national security. As he starts to investigate and interviews Jenny's family and acquaintances in town, he thinks there's something more going on and it all may tie back to traumatic event that happened to Jenny's sister Alex when she was a teenager. Overall, a fast-paced thriller set in a rural town with a cast of characters who all have history with each other and the town. While some aspects of the book required a suspension of disbelief in investigative and forensic procedure, there were many plotlines to focus on and it keeps you invested in figuring out the mystery.

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This is the second book in the author's "A 6:20 Man" series, featuring Travis Devine. The action takes place in a small town in Maine, where a CIA agent has died under suspicious circumstances. Travis is sent there to determine what happened, and whether any national security measures have been breached. He gets caught up in the small-town drama that unfolds as more people die, going back almost 15 years in the community's past. I liked this story much better than the first in the series and enjoyed learning more about Travis. Thanks to NetGalley and Grand Central Publishing for providing an ARC.

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On the surface, ex-Army Ranger Travis Devine isn't all that much different from several others from several other series who are looking to outrun/compensate for/redeem themselves because of their pasts. But the author's considerable writing talent moves Travis way up on my list of favorites, where I'm sure he'll remain. My only concern now is how I missed the first installment (this is the second).

This time, Travis is called in by his boss to investigate the death of CIA operative Jenny Silkwell, the daughter of the boss's longtime friend and a former well-known politician. Not only is Travis charged with identifying Jenny's killer, he's to learn what happened to her laptop and phone, which could have contained critical and sensitive government secrets. The task sends Travis to the smallish town of Potter, Maine, not far from the Canadian border and Bay of Fundy.

There, the plot quickly thickens; he's to work with local law enforcement, who fall somewhere in between appreciating his assistance and perseverence and wanting to ride him out of town on a rail. Jenny's family, too, is a strange bunch; mom and dad are divorced and mom has remarried, while her sister Alex and brother Dak live in two different ends of the huge family mansion and rarely meet in the middle (perhaps for good reasons).

From the git-go, some things don't add up - including how Jenny's body ended up where it ended up. But Travis is getting push-back from the local cops, who would prefer that old pots not be stirred. Needless to say, that doesn't cut it for him, especially after even more discrepancies turn up and he gets to better know some of the local players. The cuts get deeper still when he finds connections to the past and - even more telling - others who have ties to Jenny turn up dead. Uh-oh, could Travis be next on the killer's list?

I'll never tell. And if you want to find out, read the book - I'm sure you won't be disappointed. In the end, events lead to the next installment - and I, for one, am on the "edge" of my seat hoping that happens soon. Meantime, thanks to the publisher, via NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review a pre-release copy of this one.

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A CIA agent is murdered in Maine, is her murder connected to her job or is it personal. Travis Devine is sent to find out but he is not given a warm welcome. Local officials aren’t happy that he is investigating the case and there are a lot of people lying to him. Attempts are made on Devines life, are they connected to the case or old enemies showing up. There is a lot going on in this book, you won’t know who to trust and how events connect. I have never been disappointed in a Baldacci book and this one delivers. The book is part of a series but could easily be read as a stand alone. A thread left at the end of the book will hopefully lead to another book. Thank you to net galley for an advanced readers copy.

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This is the second book in this series, but you don't have to read The 6:20 Man to get the gist of this book.

It is a fast-paced (not as fast as the last book), semi-violent, suspense-filled murder/military/government mystery filled with delightful red herrings. This novel is set on the coastline of Maine, and the authors' descriptions of the area are spot on. Mind you, you do have to suspend some of your disbelief for this book, but that may be just me since I don't know much about the Amy Rangers!

This book also follows the same formula as the last book but is by no means repetitious. To me, it's just comforting to know that certain character traits and actions of Devine are going to be followed from book to book.

A good, intense read.

*ARC supplied by the publisher Grand Central Publishing, the author, and NetGalley.

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Baldacci weaves a gripping narrative filled with small town secrets butting up against international power brokers and high ranking government officials.

The Edge has twists and turns that will leave you saying "just one more chapter" to your spouse—even though they'd prefer you acquiesce to bedtime that was meant to be hours ago.

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This was a wonderful title. Riding shotgun beside Devine was the best way to spend a rainy weekend, The story was intriguing and the action kept me on the edge of my seat, no pun intended. Another great title by a great author!

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When a CIA operative is murdered in rural Maine, the government calls on Travis Devine to solve the crime – and to retrieve her missing laptop and phone, which are full of state secrets – before that information can be leaked to the wrong people. But small towns are full of secrets, and Devine must figure out who he can trust... and who wants him dead so he won’t accomplish his goals.

I have yet to be disappointed in a Baldacci book, and this one is no exception. I got sucked in from the very first chapter, and found it very hard to put the book down until I finished it. Travis is very good at analyzing whatever situation he’s in and figuring out – quickly – how to get out of whatever trouble he’s facing. Although some readers might disagree, I liked that his thought processes were spelled out in the story, so we could see how he got from point A to point B. Some of his solutions were hard to fathom, but I chalked them up to his training as a Ranger, something I know nothing about.

There were a couple of secondary plot lines running through the book, which captured my interest as well, although I could have done without the romance bit. I had a couple of characters at the top of my list of likely masterminds, and one of them turned out to be the culprit. Given that person, the creepy motive made sense.

One of the secondary story lines was left hanging, and I’m sure that will be the impetus for the next book in this series – which I cannot wait to read!

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