Summary and book reviews of The Inside Ring by Mike Lawson

The Inside Ring

By Mike Lawson

The Inside Ring
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  • Hardcover: May 2005,
    272 pages.
    Paperback: Aug 2006,
    336 pages.

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Book Summary

"The video begins with the President walking toward a marine helicopter . . ."

From a bluff overlooking Georgia's untamed Chattooga River, an assassin fires three shots. The President of the United States is wounded; his best friend and a Secret Service agent are killed. Two days later, a man in Landover, Maryland, commits suicide and in the man's home is overwhelming evidence that he was responsible for the assassination attempt.

General Andy Banks, the Secretary of Homeland Security, is nursing a guilty conscience. Only days before the assassination attempt on the President, Banks had received a note with a dire warning: "Eagle One is in danger. Cancel Chattooga River. The inside ring has been compromised. This is not a joke." The message - on Secret Service stationery - was signed "An agent in the wrong place." Banks immediately passed the note on to Secret Service Director Patrick Donnelly, who proceeded to ignore it.

Even after the assassin is found dead, Banks is determined to dig a little deeper. He turns to Speaker of the House John Fitzgerald Mahoney. The Speaker has an under-the-radar, go-to guy he uses for things like this - things he can't afford to have connected to his office. The guy is Joe DeMarco, an honest lawyer with a sordid family history.

After one meeting with Banks, DeMarco realizes he's in way over his head. But Mahoney finds the prospect of taking down Donnelly irresistible and sets DeMarco on a trail that twists through the Secret Service, the FBI, and the Department of Homeland Security and snakes all the way back to one of the more enduring mysteries of the twentieth century.

Brimming with suspense, authenticity, and wit, The Inside Ring marks the debut of a major new talent and introduces a cast of intriguing characters with many more cases ahead.

Chapter 1

The receptionist--Boston-bred, fiftysomething, hard and bright as stainless steel--arched a disapproving eyebrow at DeMarco as he entered Mahoney's offices.

"You're late," she said. "And he's in a mood today."

"So since I'm late I guess that means I can go right in," DeMarco said.

The receptionist was married to a successful accountant, a very nice man, very slim and neat and considerate. On those rare occasions they made love she fantasized about burly Italian construction workers. She used to fantasize about black men with washboard abs and shaved heads but the last few months it had been men who looked like DeMarco: dark hair, blue eyes, a Travolta dimple in his chin--and arms and shoulders made for wife-beater undershirts. However, fantasy man or not, she didn'...

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Reviews

Media Reviews
Publishers Weekly

The bad guys are sufficiently evil, the plot properly labyrinthine, the solution to the mystery completely satisfying. This is high-level entertainment from a writer who could soon rise to the top of the thriller heap.

Booklist - David Pitt

The author, who was an "independent contractor" for the U.S. Navy, seems to know what he's talking about; and clearly DeMarco is being positioned as a series lead. So far so good.

Kirkus Reviews

A fresh and entertaining thriller about plots and corruption in places low and high.....Tight and engaging story, sharp writing and dialogue that's good to the last line.

Reader Reviews
J.R. Anderson

Guilty PleasureThriller
Mr. Lawson has painted an impressionist picture with sharply delineated points of detail. His lead character is believable and capable without being superhuman. The supporting characters with their (not always endearing) quirks add richly to his ...   Read More

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Beyond the Book

Michael Lawson was raised in Pueblo, Colorado and attended college at Seattle University, receiving a degree in engineering. On leaving college he went to work for the US Navy as a nuclear engineer, spending approximately thirty years working for the Navy's nuclear power program. Some of this time was spent in Washington D.C. but most was spent at a large naval shipyard in Bremerton, Washington.

At the shipyard he managed a number of different organizations related to overhauling ...

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