Book Review: Hostage Taker (An Eve Rossi Novel) by Stefanie Pintoff

Posted August 18, 2015 by @Angelized_1st in Books, Entertainment / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Hostage Taker (An Eve Rossi Novel) by Stefanie PintoffHostage Taker by Stefanie Pintoff
Series: Eve Rossi,
Published by Random House Publishing Group on August 18th 2015
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, Police Procedural, Women Sleuths, Thrillers, General
Pages: 448
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
ISBN: 9780345531407
Buy on: AmazonBarnes & NobleiBooks

From Edgar Award winner Stefanie Pintoff comes the start of an electrifying new thriller series featuring Eve Rossi, head of a secret division of the FBI one made up of ex-convicts with extraordinary talents, oversized egos, and contempt for the rules. Perfect for readers of Iris Johansen and Catherine Coulter.


In the hushed quiet of early morning Manhattan, in front of the towering bronze doors of Saint Patrick s Cathedral, a young woman holds a sign that reads: "HELP ME." For one FBI agent, a madman s terrified hostages, and an entire city, a long and harrowing day is about to unfold. The hostage taker s identity is unknown. But he knows who FBI agent Eve Rossi is and everything about her past. Along with her presence, he demands five witnesses: ordinary people with some hidden connection. Defying her superiors, Eve begins a deadly dance with an adversary whose intentions are surely sinister, whose endgame is anything but certain, and whose cunning keeps him one step ahead at every turn. As Eve manages a taut hostage situation, she relies on the combined skills of her team a secret unit inspired by France s most notorious criminal and made up of ex-convicts with extraordinary talents, oversized egos, and contempt for the rules. Eve is up against a rapidly ticking clock. But the dangerous man calling the shots has a timetable of his own and a searing question for his targets: What are you guilty of? As shocking revelations surface, so does another crisis nobody could anticipate one not even Eve and her team may be able to stop.

The Good…:

Stefanie Pintoff begins her new series with a hostage stand-off at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York during the Christmas holiday season. Hostage Taker is the first novel in Pintoff’s Eve Rossi series. In the novel, Eve Rossi is taking personal leave from the FBI when she gets picked up by the Feds, and ordered to resolve a hostage crisis at the catholic cathedral. No one knows who the hostage taker is or what he wants, but he’s already killed one innocent victim. Now it’s up to Eve, and her band of misfits to save the day, and save Christmas.

OK, the book synopsis is better than my rehash, but that’s essentially what the novel is about. Eve Rossi is a tough-as-nails criminal profiler who is a very strong protagonist. Her team consists of criminals chosen for their unique abilities in exchange for a pardon. There’s Mace, who has connections in New York’s criminal underworld and can locate anything illegal that gets moved across the border. Garcia is ex-Special Forces. Aside from tactical training, he’s the man to go to for explosives. Eli is a financial analyst. Then there’s Haddox. He’s a hacker extraordinaire, and possible love interest for Eve.

I felt all of the characters were really strong, and I can’t wait for the next book in the series to see how their connections grow and change with each new case. I also enjoyed the mystery of figuring out what the hostage taker was after, and reading how Eve and her team would resolve the situation. Plus, Henry Ma, Eve’s boss and foil, was a wonderful addition to the book. After how everything ended, it will be fun to read about what happens to him going forward.

The Bad…:

I figured out who the bad guy was from the very beginning. I even figured out the twists and turns before they happened. While there was one surprise that occurred, I wish that the hostage taker’s identity wasn’t so obvious. Other than that, I found the book highly enjoyable, and could barely put it down.

Do I Recommend?

Yes, I do! Hostage Taker is a suspenseful mystery that keeps you on your toes. There’s loads of action, and even when there’s a lull in the action, the pace remains pretty fast. I think this has to do with the narrative styling. In between the action, Pintoff has news reports that add to the story by giving the local perspective of the situation. This keeps the story’s events from feeling isolated, but reminds readers how much of a community New York City really is.

Rating Report
Overall: 4.9

About Stefanie Pintoff

Stefanie Pintoff is the Edgar® award-winning author of HOSTAGE TAKER and the Simon Ziele historical mysteries. Her writing has also won the Washington Irving Book Prize and earned nominations for the Anthony, Macavity, and Agatha awards. Pintoff’s novels have been published around the world, including the United Kingdom, Italy, Croatia, and Japan. She lives on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, where she is at work on the next Eve Rossi thriller.


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