Wyatt Hunt

Created by John Lescroart

Former Child Protective Services investigator and Desert Storm vet WYATT HUNT is the head of The Hunt Club, an up-and-coming San Francisco detective agency that assays to update Joe Gores' acclaimed DKA series, about another character-heavy (and coincidentally also San Francisco-based) agency.

But whereas Gores employed a terse, Hammet-like tone that was all business, and kept things humming and to the point, Lerscroart submerges his readers in the slightly more soapy waters of James Patterson beach reads, where no incident can occur without a careful description of assorted characters' reactions to it and, indeed, no character -- no matter how minor -- can be truly introduced until we've received a psychological pot-shot at what makes them tick.

Together, Wyatt, receptionist Tamara Dade (whom he rescued when he was with Child Services) and her brother, investigator Mickey, make for a solid team, and cop buddy and occassional rival, homicide detective Devin Juhle, adds just enough grit to keep things hopping, but the layers of emotional angst that get piled on these characters (and the rest of the ever-expanding agency) as the series progresses can be wearying. For those of us who like our plots to move hard and fast and to be shown and not endlessly told, it can be a frustrating read: this meandering, Dynasty-like soap opera that seems to take forever to get from point A to point B.

Lescroart's saving grace, then, is that he really is a solid plotter, and that once he gets cooking he tends to stay relatively focussed, leaving the superfluous emotional scenery chewing behind, and relying on more than two-penny melodrama to heighten suspense.

Lescroart is the author of a slew of novels, most featuring his series characters defense attorney Dismas Hardy and police detective Abe Glitsky, although in the San Francisco of his creation, it's not unknown for his assorted characters to put in cameos in others' series, Wyatt for example popping up in The Suspect (2007) working for attorney Gina Roake, and Abe Glitsky showing up in the The Hunter (2012). Lescroart lives in northern California.


Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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