Don’t Let the Devil Ride by Ace Atkins

Book Description from the Publisher

Addison McKellar isn’t clueless—she knows she and her husband Dean don’t have the perfect marriage—but she’s still shocked when he completely vanishes from her life. At first Addison is annoyed, but as days stretch into a week and she’s repeatedly stonewalled by Dean’s friends and associates, her frustration turns into genuine alarm. When even the police seem dismissive of her concerns, Addison turns to her father’s old friend, legendary Memphis PI Porter Hayes.

Porter and Addison begin to dig deeper into Dean’s affairs and quickly discover that he was never the hardworking business owner and family man he pretended to be. As they piece together the connections between a hook-handed mercenary, one of Elvis’s former leading ladies, and a man posing as an FBI agent, it becomes clear that Dean was deeply enmeshed in a high-stakes web of international intrigue, and Porter and Addison aren’t the only ones looking for him.

Dean angered some very dangerous people before he disappeared—people who have already killed to get what they want—and they won’t hesitate to come after his family to even the score.

Don’t Let the Devil Ride is a thrilling adventure about what can happen when you pull back the curtain on your life. Ace Atkins, long known for gritty Southern noir with a witty edge, has crafted an ambitious, globe-hopping story that comes home to Memphis in explosive fashion.

About the book
Pages: 380
Author: Ace Atkins
Publisher: William Morrow
Publish date: June 25, 2024

Thrilling Reads Review

“Don’t Let the Devil Ride” by Ace Atkins is a gripping Southern noir standalone thriller set in the atmospheric backdrop of Memphis. The story kicks off with Addison McKellar, whose life takes a dramatic turn when her husband, Dean, vanishes without a trace. Desperate and determined, Addison enlists the help of veteran private investigator Porter Hayes to unravel the secrets behind her husband’s vanishing act.

Atkins skillfully crafts a fast-paced narrative filled with suspense and dark humor, drawing readers into a world of deception, resilience, and toxic relationships. As Addison and Porter dig deeper, they uncover a web of international intrigue involving a faded movie star, a billionaire Bible salesman, a French arms dealer, and a Russian gangster, among others. The plot’s complexity and the constant twists keep readers on the edge of their seats, guessing until the very end.

The novel’s strength lies in its well-developed characters and the vivid portrayal of Southern life. Addison emerges as a compelling protagonist, defying the initial impressions of a rich, alcoholic housewife. Her intelligence and determination shine through as she navigates the dangerous waters of her husband’s secret life. Porter Hayes, nearing 70 and primarily chasing cheating spouses, is a charming and resourceful PI whose past connections add depth to his character.

The multiple perspectives employed by Atkins enrich the story, though they may pose a challenge for some readers. The narrative gains depth from each character’s perspective, weaving together interconnected lives and concealed motives. However, the large cast sometimes leads to superficial character development for some players.

Despite this, “Don’t Let the Devil Ride” delivers a satisfying blend of intense action, dark comedy, and poignant moments. Atkins’ storytelling prowess ensures a steady pace and engaging plot, culminating in a thrilling finale that leaves readers wanting more. This novel is a standout for fans of Southern noir and suspense, showcasing Atkins’ talent for weaving intricate, compelling tales.

Interview with Ace Atkins

I had the pleasure of interviewing Ace Atkins on my podcast, “Meet the Thriller Author.” You can check out that interview by clicking on the banner below:

Ace Atkins interview on "Meet the Thriller Author" podcast.
It's safe to say that Alan Petersen loves mystery and thriller books. He writes high-octane thrillers, hosts the MEET THE THRILLER AUTHOR podcast, and reviews thriller/mystery books.

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