The Second Perimeter
A Joe DeMarco Thriller
by Mike Lawson
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Originally published by Doubleday in 2006, The Second Perimter was the second novel featuring Joe DeMarco, an average guy frequently tossed into deep waters. Lawson had a thirty-year career in the Navy as a senior civilian. He was a nuclear engineer responsible for their nuclear power program on the west coast. He's smart, and knows first hand how government works (and doesn't), and how power plays out in real life.
More than any book in this series, The Second Perimeter draws on Lawson's background. In The Second Perimeter, when the Secretary of the Navy’s nephew tells him that two colleagues at a U.S. Naval base are committing fraud, he is skeptical. Reluctant to launch an official investigation based on a relative’s vague suspicions, the Secretary asks Mahoney to send his guy DeMarco to check out the story.
As DeMarco and his friend Emma, a semi-retired intelligence agent, begin to investigate what they thought was a low-stakes government swindle, they come to the terrifying realization that an espionage ring has infiltrated the naval base. The leader of the espionage ring is a woman with whom Emma has a history dating back to the Cold War. Their encounter destroyed the other woman’s once promising career and turned her into a ruthless operative who cares about only one thing: destroying Emma. DeMarco has never been near a spy in his life - at least not that he ever knew of but now he’s mixed up in a deadly conflict with a foreign agent more lethal than anyone he’s ever encountered. Not only is Emma’s life in danger, but Mahoney’s as well.
Lawson has written one excellent novel after another over the past few years. Grove/Atlantic is publishing his new hardcover, House Divided, in the summer of 2011, and it has been getting great advance reviews, including starred reviews from Booklist and PW. With two novels under contract beyond House Divided, the series has legs, and will keep leading readers to the fantastic books where it all started.
Praise for The Second Perimeter
A rich variety of spies, former spies, and criminal operatives entangled in a deady and suspenseful war of attack and reprisal. What could be more entertaining?” Thomas Perry
Lawson again ratchets up the suspense and takes DeMarco on a wild ride.”-The Oregonian
At once a solid thriller and a revealing look behind the scenes of American politics.” Booklist
Proves that Lawson’s fine debut was no fluke. While the author’s prose is highly readable and his plot fast-paced, it’s the character of DeMarco, a man of insecurities, weaknesses and outright defects, that separates this new series from the herd. DeMarco also has a dry, self-deprecating sense of humor that contrasts nicely to the solemn gravity of his professional circumstances.”-Publishers Weekly
- Grove/Atlantic, Inc., December 2011
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