Presto! The Bowers Files disappear and James's new series explodes onto the fiction stage with Jevin Banks, an escape artist who tragically loses his family and his nerve for his craft. Now he uses his background as an illusionist to debunk fake psychics and televangelists by replicating and exposing what they do on his television show. When he and his sidekicks, Charlene and Xavier, delve into a pharmaceutical company's research into mind-to-mind communication and therapies that could radically extend life, the worlds of big drug companies, counter-terrorism, and government collide.James's brand of high-end suspense distinguishes itself as Christian through characters that stare evil in the face and don't back down because of their faith, despite doubts and confusion. The writing, pacing and plot lines are impeccable, the author always pulling up the shade a bit for a shaft of light and redemption to make gruesome scenes somehow bearable. Much isn't fully resolved, but that's why readers like series and are happy to let money vanish and reappear in the pockets of masterful novelists like James.
I am a HUGE fan of the Patrick Bowers series by Steven James - HUGE! So when I knew Steven James was writing a new series I was excited but tentative. Change can be hard for readers sometimes, but it isn't always a bad thing. In this case I found Placebo to be very interesting and cerebral, with a new cast of characters that were fun to get to know. I had trouble letting go of Patrick Bowers at the beginning and embracing Jevin Banks - though I really liked his sidekicks Charlene and Xavier immediately. The plots that interwove in the book were a little hard to track for awhile, but was very intriguing. Once my head was able to wrap around what was going on I really liked what I was reading. This is going to be an interesting series and I think each book will get stronger as Jevin Banks starts stepping into his own.