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Books – Review of Foul Play by Stuart Woods – 2021 – Routine Thriller

by AniM
foul play cover
Foul Play Book Cover

Book Review of Foul Play by Stuart Woods – Regulation Thriller

My Rating – 3.5 out of 5

Plot Summary (Storyline) – Foul Play

Stuart Woods and his popular protagonist, Stone Barrington are back with the 59th book of the series and it follows a similar trajectory as the earlier ones. Stone Barrington, who apparently has a law practice, is intimately close to the current President of the US and acts as a consultant to the CIA’s Director, Lance Cabot. He is a multi-millionaire with real estate in quite a few locations in the World and is always sleeping with one woman or the other, sometimes on alternate days and even together! The Police Commissioner of New York, Dino Bachetti, is his bosom buddy and traipses off on adventures with Stone like he has nothing better to do.

When Stone gets a new referral client, Shepherd Troutman, he is skeptical about the man’s antecedents, though they meet under strange circumstances. As Shep was coming to meet Stone, he gets mugged at Stone’s doorstep, and had it not been for Stone’s chance intervention, he might even have been killed. Shep has recently come across a load of money – 250 million USD, by selling their family business and needs Stone’s advice and help to manage and invest that money. Stone agrees to take him on as a client but the attacks on him continue, necessitating the addition of protection round the clock.

Foul Play author Stuart Woods Interview

Sensing something fishy about the sell transaction, Stone discovers the shady nature of the purchasers – a Delaware corporation, which seems to be a front for the Russian mob, led by Gregor Kronk. When they sense that Shep has more to offer than what they have bought, they want it by hook or by crook. Stone has to set up elaborate deceptions and diversions to evade the mob. Jetsetting between New York, Martha’s Vineyard, and LA, Stone and Mike Freeman’s Strategic Services Inc. set up bodyguards, police cover, etc. to ward off the mob. But they still get around to causing damage to Shep’s properties.

Realizing that Stone is at the forefront of all the evasion, the Mob turns its attention to Stone. All this high drama is interspersed by the usual romantic interludes and lavish spending sprees (they routinely make my eyes water!) and there is a sudden change in narrative. It has nothing to do with the cat-and-mouse game going on with Shep and Gregor Kronk but with Stone’s own life. But that will be for you to read and find out. Stone eventually finds out that Shep had kept a few crucial pieces of information with himself, things that could have hamstrung Stone’s attempt to keep Shep as invisible as possible and away from the ire of Gregor Kronk and his mob.

The disclosures come thick and fast, though Stone with his usual resourcefulness, manages to work everything into his plan of finally confronting and negotiating peace with Gregor Kronk. But a final confrontation is set to happen as Gregor Kronk is not known for patience and gets what he wants….

foul play image
Foul Play Introductory Image

Conclusion – Book Review of Foul Play

It is the usual fare from Stuart Woods – of lavish lifestyles, the rich and famous, and a not too complex tale of intrigue and violence. So another chapter of the ageless Stone Barrington saga comes to an end, leaving us wondering when his philandering ways will get him into trouble, but they don’t. Even his saucy interludes with Holly Barker escapes media scrutiny regularly. A nice, comfortable read for those afternoons when you have nothing better to do, or better yet, for those long boring flights.

foul play author stuart woods
Foul Play Author Stuart Woods

*I hope you have enjoyed reading this book review as much as I have enjoyed writing this! Do watch this space for more such reviews and navigate through the links below for more… Thank you!! *

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