The Negotiator — Dee Henderson

The O’Malleys are an unusual family. Most of us get our brothers and sisters through chance or fate, whatever you like to call it; the O’Malleys are brothers and sisters by choice. Orphaned and left in Trevor House to be raised by the government, Kate, Marcus, Jennifer, Lisa, Rachel, Stephen and Jack made a pact: wherever they went in their lives, they would be there for each other. Seven children, once strangers, became one through their common suffering and their determination that they would never be alone again. When they reached adulthood, they all legally changed their last name to O’Malley, and made it official.

“The Negotiator” is the story of Kate O’Malley, the oldest of the girls and the “big sister.” She works as a hostage negotiator and as such, as seen many difficult circumstances, but she has an intuition into the hearts and minds of the criminals she works with, and she finds ways to reach them, bringing the highly charged situation under control. She doesn’t wear a bullet-proof vest; she just walks into the scene, speaks soothingly, and uses patience. Her skills are extraordinary.

It was a typical bank robbery with hostages. Knowing her job well, Kate goes in, fully prepared to bring down the situation. What she wasn’t counting on was a hotshot FBI agent, Dave Richman, thinking he knew better than her how to do her job. Because of his interference, she almost loses the trust of the bank robber, only to pull it out at the last.

Dave knows he blew it. Kate is obviously a skilled negotiator and he should have left her alone, but he finds he just can’t. He wants to get to know her, find out what makes her tick.

Someone has blown up an airplane and framed Kate for it. She has been receiving threats for months, but this was far more than she ever expected. Sick at heart, she knows she has to do whatever it takes to close this chapter from her past and bring the man to justice, and that means turning to the FBI, and learning to trust God, as Dave has encouraged her to do.

I read this book in one night, staying up far too late to finish it, devouring each page like a starving coyote. If you only read one Dee Henderson, which I truly hope won’t be the case, this is the book to read.

(This book was published by Multnomah, year undetermined.)