A book review of ‘Split Second’ by David Baldacci
I’m not sure why I make a habit of reading sequential books in the wrong order. 🙂 (I did the same thing with The Camel Club).
Split Second is the prequel to Simple Genius. It is the foundation of the relationship between Sean King and Michelle Maxwell, and shows how they came to meet.
King was a Secret Service Agent who messed up many years ago while protecting a politician. His lapse in concentration led to his protectee being murdered on his watch, a mistake for which he was subsequently forced out of the Service.
Michelle Maxwell is a current agent in the Secret Service, climbing her way up the ladder very quickly. However, she too makes a bad error in judgement on the job, and while she is supposed to be protecting a presidential candidate, he is kidnapped. (The title of the book is a reference to the amount of time it takes for something to go wrong when working in such a high-profile and dangerous job).
Since they share such a similar experience, Maxwell and King team up to try retrieve the politician. Along the journey they unravel some of the mystery of his fall from grace all those years ago. Sean and Michelle begin to discover that there might be more connecting them together than they initially thought.
I know a lot of readers didn’t enjoy the last quarter of the book; many felt the way everything ended was a bit weak and that the tying up of the novel was a bit too far-fetched.
One on hand I can understand where they are coming from, and that the overall plot was just a bit too unbelievable. But on the other hand, I thought it was all cleverly done, and the reasoning for the actions of the “bad guy” could be believed.
Whatever the feeling, I found it to be a good novel by Baldacci, and he created a great pair of protagonists for future stories. I enjoyed it.