The Bestseller Job by Greg Cox, the final of the three Leverage novels published in 2013, leads the Leverage crew into the worlds of both book publishing and assassins and black ops. When an old friend of Eliot, who has penned a bestselling book dealing with black ops missions and assassinations, is killed after a book signing event, the Leverage crew is hired by his fiancée to get back the rights to the book from his brother. But when they pull off the job the crew realises that way more is at stake here…
Just to set the record straight: I’m more of a casual viewer of the Leverage TV show, catching episodes here and there, so you might want to keep that in mind when reading my review.
Greg Cox sets a good chunk of this novel (especially in the first half or so) in a setting he is intimately familiar with, the book publishing world. And his vast experience both as an author and editor shines through, especially when he includes little good-natured jabs here and there. His being so familiar with the topic makes the narrative feel genuine and certainly helps the reader to delve into the novel. The second part of the novel goes more into the black ops business, and although Greg Cox isn’t as versed in this world (as least I hope so) the transition is relatively flawless. The whole plot of the novel would have fit perfectly into the TV show. If there is one thing that really bugged me it is that the clues for the identity of Tarantuala, the former assassin who was supposedly was the informant for the book, were a bit too obvious for my taste, so that I spent at least a third of the book waiting for the Leverage crew to catch up to it.
From my limited experience Greg Cox seems to have captured the crew really well, highlighting the quirks of the characters without getting too on-the-nose with it. I think the characters he captures best are Eliot and Devereaux, arguably the two team members with the biggest roles in the novel. Every one of the main characters gets their moment(s) to shine though, so that fans of every character should be satisfied with what The Bestseller Job has to offer for the characters. The original characters are pretty much all fleshed out enough to be a vital part of the plot – maybe the henchman of the “big bad” stays a tad one-dimensional – but in the end they’re just bit-players so this is forgivable.
Overall The Bestseller Job is an entertaining novel which should be a welcome addition to to the bookshelf of everyone yearning for more Leverage tales. Sadly it is unlikely that there will be more Leverage novels by Greg Cox (or anyone else) for that matter as Leverage was cancelled shortly before the three novels were published.
The Bestseller Job (by Greg Cox) was released by Berkley in May 2013.