The Crooked Staircase is the third novel by Dean Koontz to feature vengeful widow, Jane Hawk. It was first published in 2018.
Jane Hawk is a former FBI agent who is stunned by the sudden suicide of her beloved husband but finds that the idea did not occur to him on its own. She finds a deeply buried government program involving mind control. Two malevolent operatives are on her trail. Her young son is in the care of two dedicated allies, but her efforts there may not be enough to keep him from danger. Jane is on the trail of more leaders of this group known as Arcadians and finds herself having to employ some ugly tactics to get the answers she needs.
In recent years, Koontz seems to continue his fascination with rogue government operatives and strange conspiracies involving subtle domination by the state, so this series seems to be more of the same. Although Jane Hawk is compelling enough for me to not mind following her. Koontz still has a unique prose style to keep the sometimes overly familiar plot somewhat fresh. The killer duo known as Dubose and Jergen are eccentric yet evil enough for me to relish the final confrontation with Jane Hawk whenever that happens. There isn’t much I would consider extraordinary about this novel, but the good news is that it does not stand out as anything terribly obnoxious either.
It was at least good enough for me to be willing to read the fourth installment. But before that, I will try out The Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi as my next literary indulgence.