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The Fallen (Memory Man series) by David Baldacci

Reviewed by Allen Hott

The FallenAmos Decker, the Memory Man, is back in a new story but using many of his previous attributes as he goes about solving crimes. In this one, however, he does have some different kinds of problems with his fabulous memory. If you have read any of Amos’s previous stories you know he has a fantastic memory and though it gives him problems at times it is usually a great tool for an FBI agent to have.

This time he and Alex Jamison, his FBI partner, take a vacation to a small rust-belt town called Baronville to visit Alex’s sister’s family. While there they not only discover there are some major problems in the small town but invariably they get involved in working out some of the problems. It seems as though at one time a guy named Baron owned the town and was unliked by most residents. He supposedly left a fortune somewhere when he died but no one has ever been able to find it.

Now his last descendant lives in the old dilapidated mansion and he too is unliked by most everyone as they feel (a) he is a Baron which is reason enough to hate him and (b) he may know where the fortune is hidden.

The town is basically on its last legs and it seems the only industry doing any good is the drug trade! There is a new factory that has been built but it basically using automation or jobs that require a lot of heavy lifting plus a lot of physical moving from one place to another. So it hasn’t helped the residents much.

Decker, however, gets involved in the criminal activity one night when he sees and hears strange things and noises on the street behind where he and Alex are staying. As Decker begins doing some investigation he finds many strange and uncomfortable things about the few residents on the street. Plus he finds two dead bodies in one of the empty houses and the bodies turn out to be DEA agents who may or not have been acting in a lawful manner.

The more Decker investigates the more and more people appear to be doing drugs, selling drugs, and maybe even more illegal things. In doing his digging he finds that there are ties to people from the past who are either dead or no longer live in Baronville. And then Alex’s brother-in-law is found dead in what supposedly was a occupational death. Later Decker works through that one as he digs into the happenings at the new factory.

By the time Baldacci has carried the reader close to the conclusion of this great read he has implicated many different people who may or may not have committed the many killings and crimes. But one thing stands out and that is the drug trade. Baldacci even gives some details on today’s drug problems in our country and how so many start from the use of pain killers and then work their way up the chain of opioids.

But not only are the druggies and dealers involved In this story but it also involves insurance companies, innocent bystanders, and even cops who all get turned bad by the entire process.

Overall another great book by Baldacci as he uses Amos Decker to work and solve criminal events while constantly working his fabulous memory as a tool!

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