Sunday, January 12, 2020

Book Review: 'Rogue Elements: The Gamma Sequence Book 2' by Dan Alatorre

Rogue Elements by Dan Alatorre

‘Ten months of treatment. That sounds like forever.’

Florida author Dan Alatorre was born in Ohio, and graduated from the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida before earning an MBA from Tampa College. He is famous for his many book s that deal with humor and food and for some short stories in anthologies that fall into the mystery/horror category. It is rewarding to see how now he visits the full-length mystery novel - DOUBLE BLIND, THE NAVIGATORS, and now THE GAMMA SEQUENCE, a Medical Thriller series of which this ROGUE ELEMENTS is Book 2 - and is as successful with serious tales as he is with humor.

As with all his books, Dan jumps in with an explosive start that pulls his readers in immediately. Taking on scientific sidebars – genetics, in this case – is another aspect of Dan’s talent that makes his novels fascinating. But using that sidebar to shoulder the spear of the plot takes special skill, and the manner in which he incorporates the dark side of scientific evidence makes this story ring true.

Dan’s keen writing style blisters the opening of this fascinating new volume, evidenced in his opening line – ‘The assassin backed his stolen car into the parking space, exactly three rows form the target vehicle where the device would go. He tapped his fingers on the wheel. This was a good spot. Close enough to see his victim in the parking garage, but far away enough to not be noticed by her. He glanced at his watch for the third time in two minutes, Two twenty-seven A.M.’
The synopsis provides a map of the tale – ‘After completing the biggest case of his career, private detective Hank DeShear returns home to start treatment for a disabling genetic condition that could end his life, but he learns his partner on the prior case has just been murdered. Was he wrong to conclude the secretive killer known as The Greyhound had declared a truce? Or have disciples of The Greyhound surfaced to carry on with the murders? DeShear is able to attach himself to an overseas goodwill mission headed by the U. S. Vice President, enabling him to pursue leads in foreign hospitals he thinks could be offshoots of Angelus Genetics’ illegal organ harvesting programs and human trafficking operations. Determined to pursue the truth wherever it leads, DeShear must also keep a low profile so he doesn’t become the next murder victim—but the onset of his debilitating condition may kill DeShear before the murderer gets a chance. ’

And so Dan Alatorre proves he is as successful with writing mysteries as he is with all the other categories of books that are best sellers. This is a griping story - and one that magnetizes our attention to possibilities. 

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.