Sunday, March 3, 2024

Review - Leave No Trace

Title:  Leave No Trace
Author A. J. Landau, Jon Land, Jeff Ayers
Series:   National Park Thrillers #1
Publisher:  Minotaur Books
Genre:   Mystery & Thrillers
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   352
Date of Publication:   February 27, 2024
My Rating:   4 Stars

In a daring, brutal act of terrorism, an explosion rocks and topples the Statue of Liberty. Special Agent Michael Walker of the National Park Service is awakened by his boss with that news and sent to New York as the agent-in-charge. Not long after he lands, he learns two things - one that Gina Delgado of the FBI has been placed in charge of the investigation as the lead of the Joint Terrorism Task Force and two, that threats of a second terrorism attack are already being called into the media. While barred from the meetings of the Joint Task Force for his lack of security clearance, Walker finds a young boy among the survivors with a critical piece of information - a video linking the attackers to the assault.

As a radical domestic terrorist group, led by a shadowy figure known only as Jeremiah, threatens further attacks against America's cultural symbols, powerful forces within the government are misleading the investigation to further their own radical agenda.


This chilling read is all about domestic terrorism, with the first target being the bombing at the Statue of Liberty. Chilling indeed. The Statue of Liberty has been an American icon since the late 1800s and was only the first of many planned targets that could destroy the very fiber of life in America if these planned attacks all came to fruition.

Our principal protagonists are Gina Delgado, Special Agent in Charge at the FBI and National Park Service Special Agent Michael Walker. Michael has no idea what he is walking into. His job is very important to him, after he lost his wife and more during an attack years previously. Michael's job is hindered for more than one reason, and part of that reason is lack of security clearance when it comes to the Joint Terrorism Task Force. Gina also has her challenges as they seek to locate the terrorists before more innocent lives could be lost.

Michael doesn't miss a thing, and manages to protect a witness as he works independently, as well as with Gina when it comes to looking for the terrorists. Michael is an amazing character, a man who lost a foot at the same time he lost his wife, but managed to overcome the impossible to continue his work with the National Park Services, albeit in a different capacity.

Danger, political intrigue and vendettas are part and parcel of this engaging read. The story started off strong with danger and action, with quite a bit of drama mixed in. Personally, I found the first half of this book more exciting than the second half, but found myself really drawn into the story beyond the travesty of domestic terrorism, as a lot of it took place across different national parks, highlighting dangers that were almost unimaginable. I can't wait to see what next lies in store for Michael and hopefully Gina.

Many thanks to Minotaur Books and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


A. J. Landau is the pseudonym for two authors: Jon Land, the award-winning, bestselling author and co-author of more than 50 books, and Jeff Ayers, a reviewer, former librarian and author. Land lives in Providence, Rhode Island, and Jeff Ayers lives in Seattle, Washington.

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