Reviews for Two nights in Lisbon

Library Journal
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In Barclay's Take Your Breath Away, Andrew Mason is suspected of murdering wife Brie after she disappears, and further complications arise when someone resembling her shows up at the couple's old address before vanishing again (100,000-copy first printing). First seen in Brown's 2021 New York Times best seller, Arctic Storm Rising, former U.S. Air Force officer Nick Flynn now faces a Countdown to Midnight, with Midnight the code name for a secret project between Russia and Iran involving a lethal new weapon (125,000-copy first printing). In Burke's Every Cloak Rolled in Blood, novelist Aaron Holland is guided by the ghost of his recently deceased daughter when his do-gooding efforts draw him into a shady crowd that includes a former Klansman, a not-so-saintly minister, some scary fake-evangelical bikers, and a murderer (100,000-copy first printing). In Carr's In the Blood, a Mossad operative known to former Navy SEAL James Reece is killed in a plane explosion (she herself had just completed a targeted assassination), but searching for the culprit might mean walking into a trap (200,000-copy first printing). In Horowitz's third James Bond outing, as yet Untitled, 007 is starting to question his role as the Cold War wears on but agrees to act as a double agent so that he can infiltrate a newly hatched Soviet intelligence organization (50,000-copy first printing). Unfolding 15 years after events in Iles's "Natchez Burning" trilogy, Southern Man reintroduces Penn Cage, back in action as shots fired at a Bienville music festival nearly kill his daughter, a militant Black group takes responsibility for the torching of antebellum mansions, and a close friend is shot to death by a county deputy (200,000-copy first printing). Her career stumbling, lawyer Nicole Muller gladly complies when she's asked by the exclusive women's professional group Panthera Leo to Please Join Us, but as author McKenzie soon reveals, membership comes at a price (60,000-copy first printing). Demoted from the elite Hawks police unit for being too keen on uncovering state corruption, Meyer's stalwart detectives Benny Griessel and Vaughn Cupido await transfer from Cape Town to dull duty in Stellenbosch when an anonymous warning and a missing-student assignment reveal that The Dark Flood of corruption they knew was there is worse than they imagined. On a business trip with her new, much younger husband, Pavone's latest heroine, Ariel Price, can't enjoy her Two Nights in Lisbon; she awakens one morning to find her spouse missing and begins to realize that she hardly knows him (200,000-copy first printing). Edgar-nominated for The Impossible Fortress and also the editor behind Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Rekulak returns with Hidden Pictures, featuring a nanny whose five-year-old charge draws increasingly creepy and sophisticated pictures (shown in the text) hinting at a long-ago murder (250,000-copy first printing). A woman lies murdered, surrounded by Dark Objects that include the book How To Process a Murder by forensics expert Laughton Rees, who's of course immediately called to the scene; the latest from "Sanctus" author Toyne (50,000-copy first printing).


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Secrets, lies, and revenge permeate this taut international thriller. The recently married Ariel Pryce wakes up one morning in a Lisbon hotel room, expecting her husband, John Wright, to be in bed beside her. He isn’t. She looks for a note, tries calling him, queries hotel staff, all to no avail. She calls Portuguese police and then the American Embassy, who wonder at first if Ms. Pryce isn’t some crazy lady wasting everyone’s time. But a lot happens muito rápido: Ariel receives a ransom demand for 3 million euros to be delivered within 48 hours for John’s safe release by unknown captors. The CIA knows that John is not who he claims to be and thinks that Ariel "must be more important than she’s letting on.” For one thing, she changed her name from Laurel Turner in her adulthood. A nosy American reporter starts poking around. Moving between past and present and among the viewpoints of Ariel and her several observers, Pavone uses short scenes to build fast-paced tension. Who is behind the kidnapping, and why? Ariel isn’t rich, and there’s only one way—blackmail—to come up with the dough. She and her extortee can inflict great harm on each other, and in fact one of them had a head start years earlier. So will she get the cash and rescue John? Then suspicious polícia stop Ariel from boarding a flight to the U.S., the CIA monitors her calls, at least one CIA observer ponders the value of having her whacked, and a relentless, coke-sniffing reporter is convinced he smells a blockbuster scoop. Surprise builds on surprise, and although the reader may sense where the complicated plot is headed, the twists keep coming. Two nights in Lisbon sound like a fun vacation as long as someone isn’t trying to uncover a horrible secret from your past. This high-stakes drama grabs your attention and doesn’t let go. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

As was stunningly evident in his two Kate Moore thrillers (The Expats, 2012, and The Paris Diversion, 2019), Pavone has that special ability to construct plots that are artworks in their own right, marvels of architecture and intelligence. He’s at it again in this jaw-dropping thriller about a woman, Ariel Pryce, who wakes up in Lisbon to find her husband, financial consultant John Wright, missing and possibly kidnapped. Much frustration follows, as the Lisbon police and those at the American Embassy doubt Ariel’s version of what happened. As we learn more of Ariel’s backstory, including the reason why she is reluctant to ask for help from a politician she knew in her life before John, we go all in for this woman who has survived abuse from multiple men and who has reinvented herself several times, moving from a failed actress to rich man’s wife to “pregnant woman with no money and no assets and no skills and no job.” And, throughout it all, she has been “a disbelieved woman.” Not this time, we think, even though we sort of know Pavone could be setting us up. (Pro tip: Pavone is always setting us up.) However, like the great Ross Thomas, Pavone uses byzantine plotting to do more than exhaust his readers; with all their surprises, his plots are finally tools to reveal character. Another jewel in an already-bedecked crown.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

A suspicious kidnapping in Lisbon, Portugal, drives this excellent thriller from Edgar winner Pavone (The Paris Diversion). When American businessman John Wright vanishes one morning from his hotel, his wife, Ariel Pryce, insists he was kidnapped, but issues soon emerge that make both the Lisbon police and the CIA skeptical. Why, for instance, are there no witnesses or video evidence of a crime taking place? Why did Pryce, whose account of the incident is fuzzy, change her legal name a decade earlier? And what’s to be made of Wright’s short stretch in the CIA a while back? When Pryce comes up with €2 million for a ransom payoff, the web leads investigators to the bank account of the current U.S. treasury secretary, who’s soon to become the U.S. vice president and has a past that could subject him to blackmail. Pavone skillfully layers plot details, often shifting points of view, all the way to the end of this superior, elegantly crafted yarn. The enigmatic central character, whose moral compass is set a bit differently than most, sets this above the pack. Agent: David Gernert, Gernert Company. (May)


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Secrets, lies, and revenge permeate this taut international thriller.The recently married Ariel Pryce wakes up one morning in a Lisbon hotel room, expecting her husband, John Wright, to be in bed beside her. He isnt. She looks for a note, tries calling him, queries hotel staff, all to no avail. She calls Portuguese police and then the American Embassy, who wonder at first if Ms. Pryce isnt some crazy lady wasting everyones time. But a lot happens muito rpido: Ariel receives a ransom demand for 3 million euros to be delivered within 48 hours for Johns safe release by unknown captors. The CIA knows that John is not who he claims to be and thinks that Ariel "must be more important than shes letting on. For one thing, she changed her name from Laurel Turner in her adulthood. A nosy American reporter starts poking around. Moving between past and present and among the viewpoints of Ariel and her several observers, Pavone uses short scenes to build fast-paced tension. Who is behind the kidnapping, and why? Ariel isnt rich, and theres only one wayblackmailto come up with the dough. She and her extortee can inflict great harm on each other, and in fact one of them had a head start years earlier. So will she get the cash and rescue John? Then suspicious polcia stop Ariel from boarding a flight to the U.S., the CIA monitors her calls, at least one CIA observer ponders the value of having her whacked, and a relentless, coke-sniffing reporter is convinced he smells a blockbuster scoop. Surprise builds on surprise, and although the reader may sense where the complicated plot is headed, the twists keep coming. Two nights in Lisbon sound like a fun vacation as long as someone isnt trying to uncover a horrible secret from your past. This high-stakes drama grabs your attention and doesnt let go. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Ariel Pryce wakes up in a Lisbon hotel room and her husband is gone; no note, no explanation. She exoects John to appear any minute. When he doesn't show up for breakfast, Ariel panics. She approaches hotel security for help, then the Lisbon police, and finally the American embassy. The police are asking too many questions, and Ariel doesn't have the answers. Then the ransom call arrives, and a desperate Ariel takes matters into her own hands. Pavone's newest international thriller (after The Paris Diversion) is as long as it is tedious. Ariel is long-suffering, and her history is laid out in excruciating detail, including her previous marital woes and many heartbreaking sexual assaults. Despite the quick back-and-forth between past and present, and the deluge of characters, the story turns out to have an interesting and unexpected conclusion. VERDICT Fans of Chris Bohjalian's Cassie Bowden and Camilla Läckberg's Faye Adelheim may be sympathetic to Ariel's plight and able to overlook the high page count.—Carmen Clark

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