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Death Benefits (1999)
by Thomas Perry
References to this work on external resources.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0804115427, Mass Market Paperback)Fans of Thomas Perry's popular series featuring Jane Whitefield, the Seneca Indian woman who helps people disappear (The Face-Changers, Shadow Woman, et al.) may be disappointed when they discover that Death Benefits doesn't feature the heroine who has won this writer so many new readers. But the disappointment won't last longer than the first page of this intriguing and extremely well-written new thriller, whose hero, John Walker, a data analyst for a large insurance company, deserves a series of his own.
When a security man named Max Stillman plucks Walker out of the office pool and dragoons him into investigating a fraud against the McClaren Life and Casualty, Walker's previously safe life takes a new and potentially dangerous turn. As the pair begin searching for the missing employee, who signed off on the huge (and phony) payoff of a death claim, and follow her to a grave in a Midwestern wheat field, Walker discovers talents he never knew he had and a thirst for vengeance. With the mysterious Stillman, he tracks the conspirators to a New Hampshire village and an explosive and shocking conclusion to a fraud that's much older than either of the men might have guessed. Like Don Winslow, whose California Fire and Life also focused on insurance fraud, Perry manages to make even the dusty back corners of the corporate world a likely setting for mystery and mayhem. This is a sharp, suspenseful, successful debut for a pair of unlikely compatriots, marked by Perry's edgy, noirish style, lively dialogue, and superb pacing. --Jane Adams
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:47 -0400)
California insurance data analyst John Walker is approached by security consultant Max Stillman, who tells Walker that a colleague with whom Walker had an affair has disappeared after paying a huge benefit to an impostor. Stillman wants to find her and convict her; Walker is convinced the woman is innocent. Teaming up, Walker and Stillman are in an urgent race to track her down.
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