The Silver Wolf by Rob Sinclair (Bloodhound Books)

Over the last couple of years, I’ve always waited in eager anticipation of Rob Sinclair’s next novel. Having read his debut novel, Dance With The Enemy, the first in the Carl Logan series, I was fully invested in Logan’s story. The transition from Carl Logan to James Ryker has been brilliantly executed by Sinclair and I was very much looking forward to reading The Silver Wolf.

In the third book in this series, James Ryker wants answers following the disappearance of the love of his life, Lisa. An attack on Ryker’s former employers, the Joint Intelligence Agency, distracts Ryker from his mission to find those responsible for Lisa’s disappearance but are the two inextricably linked? A twisted web of seemingly unconnected events all seems to come back to one name, an enigma called The Silver Wolf.

What I love about this character is that he is always so near, yet so far, to a happy ending, which gives him an unpredictable edge. As a reader, you never quite know if Ryker’s hot-headedness will overcome him and put him in danger and Sinclair plays on this so well by creating events that could send Ryker either way, building up a deliciously suspenseful read.

Ryker is also an impeccable, supposedly-former, agent with razor-sharp instincts, so he can demonstrate moments of brilliance to either solve a puzzle or extract himself from danger. He can also endure various torturous situations which Sinclair portrays in wonderfully gory detail. Surrounded by characters that ground him or rile him, exchanges with Ryker are never arbitrary, as they carry the plot forward, or add to the intrigue of who Ryker can or cannot trust.

Sinclair has generated a lovable, yet deeply flawed, character who readers instantly champion. He’s rarely smug and doesn’t feel sorry for himself; he’s almost resigned to the fact that he is never going to escape the tough life he has found himself in and the elusive happy ending seems just out of reach for him, which makes the reader sympathise with him. All this just keeps the reader wanting more and more. I sincerely hope this isn’t the last James Ryker novel, but if it is, what a brilliant last novel to finish the character on. Needless to say, I’ll be looking forward to reading the next Rob Sinclair novel.