Business is on the rise for private investigator Cassie Dewell and she now finds herself working two different cases simultaneously.
First is the case of the hidden treasure. Taking the nation by storm is the account of a millionaire who claims to have buried a chest full of treasure worth a million dollars or so. To find the location, would-be treasure hunters must decipher the clues in a poem. Currently, five people have died trying to find this treasure in remote, dangerous places in the Montana and Wyoming area.
Cassie isn’t trying to find the treasure … she’s been hired by the man purporting to be the author of the poem and the man who buried the treasure. He’s hired Cassie to see if she can figure out his identity. His reasoning is that if someone were to discover his identity, they might be able to deduce, from his past and his writings (ah ha! he’s an author!) where the treasure is buried and he really wants somone to find it based on his clues. Cassie’s not a fan of the treasure hunt, given that some have already died trying to find it, and a young man she knows, Kyle Westergaard, is searching for it – putting aside all else to search, likely in vain, for a hidden treasure.
The other job that Cassie is working on is a little more in-line with her typical work. A woman from Florida has hired her to find a man who swindled her out of millions of dollars. Another P.I. had been hired and was last reported in Anaconda, Montana on a strong lead and then all reports from the other P.I. stopped. What Cassie discovers is that the woman from Florida is not the only one who’s been swindled so. A small handful of older woman have had the same problem, likely from the same man. Even knowing the kind of man he is, Cassie must consciously restrain herself from his charms when she engages him.
This was a really fast read. Despite the two plots, the treasure hunt rather book-ending the novel, Cassie goes straight-ahead without much time spent doing the boring work, like research. There’s a little bit of danger and suspense when Cassie encounters the truly bad guy – the enforcer behind the swindle scam, but even this threat is put aside pretty easily when necessary.
The writing is direct and fast, keeping the reader turning pages. It’s a classic best-seller style novel. A beach read or a winter fire read. You won’t get bogged down in details, just lots of juicy action.
I am a little disappointed at how much ‘convenience’ comes in to play during the big show-down. One person happens in to cause problems and then another happens in to fix the situation. Whew… isn’t Cassie lucky? Yes she is. Because the cavalry she arranged for was delayed and she’d have been a goner if luck wasn’t on her side. This bit did make me roll my eyes.
Convenience also solves the book-end mystery of the treasure hunt. I mean … SERIOUS stroke of luck.
This kind of writing will sell a lot of books because you know what you’re going to get when you pick it up. Standing at a bookshelf in an airport? Want the known excitement or something that could equally be really good or really bad? Chances are you’re going to pick the known thriller, warts and all. And this one definitely has some warts.
Looking for a good book? Treasure State is a Cassie Dewell mystery thriller by C. J. Box. Two storylines that come and go so quickly you might not even notice.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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author: C. J. Box
series: Cassie Dewell #5
publisher: Minotaur Books
hardcover, 275 pages