The Escape – Lisa Harris

The Escape Lisa Harris
The Escape by Lisa Harris
Series: US Marshals #1
Published by Revell on November 3, 2020
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Thriller
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four-stars

US Marshals Madison James and Jonas Quinn are thrust into a high-profile case when they are called on to transport two prisoners across the country on a private plane. But when the plane experiences engine trouble en route from the Pacific Northwest to Colorado, the pilots crash-land the aircraft deep in the heart of the sprawling Salmon-Challis National Forest.
When Madison and Jonas regain consciousness, they find both pilots and one prisoner dead--and one fugitive on the run. They'll have to negotiate the rugged and remote backcountry through Idaho, Wyoming, and Colorado while tracking a murderer who is desperate to disappear--and will do anything to stop them.
This high-octane game of cat-and-mouse from bestselling and award-winning author Lisa Harris will have your heart pumping as you try to catch a fugitive with nothing to lose.

The Escape begins with a bang and never lets up. That becomes its biggest strength and greatest weakness. US Marshals Madison James and Jonas Quinn find themselves unlikely partners on a prisoner transport mission. They’ve met before (assuming it’s setting up a backstory that’ll get expanded on in future books) but weren’t expecting to work together here. It’s all supposed to be routine, but when their transport plane crashes in the middle of the forest their prisoner sees his chance to escape.

Damon Barrick didn’t plan on escaping, but you’d be crazy not to take the opportunity, right? Especially when the crash puts you down right the middle of the remote, rural area you grew up in and have ties to. And so the chase is on.

Lisa Harris writes a barnburner of a story, wasting no time moving from point to point, penning an intricately plotted cat-and-mouse game where the Marshals seem to always be one step behind. The pace is unrelenting, as Madison and Jonas have to navigate an unfamiliar land and unfamiliar people. The advantage is fully on Damon as he pieces together a getaway.

The Escape is like a Fast and Furious movie. It’s not always realistic, but is always entertaining. The story breaks down if you take too long to look at it, which is why Harris keeps her characters running. Questions of “But how did he…?” get cursory answers because the real answer is “Because that was the most entertaining way of doing it.” I mean, think about it. The three main characters not only survive a plane crash that killed three other people, but do so with the physical ability to run all over the woods and mastermind a getaway/chase down a killer.

There is a bit of a backstory with Madison’s character in that her husband was murdered and she thinks the killer has been sending her messages. This is all said in a by-the-way tone which, well, doesn’t really fit My Husband’s Killer Knows Where I Live and Is Toying With Me. It’s obvious that this’ll play a big part in book two and Harris only wanted a bit of foreshadowing done here, but it’s kind of a big thing that get little play or development in book one.

The Escape is an action-thriller. It does that job superbly. It’s over-the-top, fast-paced, and I enjoyed every minute of it. The problem with a book like this is that it doesn’t stay with me. There’s not enough to these characters to get attached to. I read this book about two weeks prior to penning this review and the only character whose name I could remember was Damon, the villain, because he had the most fleshed-out and interesting characterization. It’s a well-written story with two-dimensional characters. A fun read, but not so compelling that I absolutely need to continue the story.

four-stars