I may be the only person on the planet who has not previously read anything by Baldacci. A number of people have told me that they enjoy his writing and, Lord knows, he's sold a lot of books. When I couldn't find a paperback copy of The Girl Who Kicked a Hornets Nest, I picked up this book to read on the plane home from my recent trip. It fills all the important requirements for plane reading. It has to be enough pages that I can't finish it in just one flight. I had to be interesting enough to keep my attention off my misery as an air traveler. It can't be too funny or too sad (people look at you funny when you laugh out loud and cry over books on planes). I rarely read formula thrillers any other time, but they're usually a safe bet for travel reading.
This was the perfect choice. I was able to read almost the entire book during my trip, but I didn't finish it too early. It held my attention. The main guy character was strong, masculine and sexy, but he has a serious problem with vulnerability. The female main character is strong and competent but similarly damaged. They are both basically nice people (which is important to me). The bad guys are really awful, so it's fun when they get their just desserts.
Reading it in the middle of reading Stieg Larsson's trilogy, I found it interesting that this book adhered to the rules of writing. It's strictly a by-the-book formula novel. It hits all its marks and does its job of holding the reader's attention. It was an entertaining way to pass an afternoon on a plane. It did not, however, leave me emotionally breathless and running to the bookstore to buy another book by this author. I probably will read something else by him when I have occasion to travel on another occasion, but it won't be with the eager anticipation I have for Larsson's third book.