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Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite
Bodies dumped, increasing violence, and a cartel that grows by the day and that kills with impunity! The Second Cortez by Chadwick Wall follows the story of thirty-two-year-old literature professor Nicolás Nolano whose idyllic life gets turned upside down as the violence escalates in his beautiful town of Veracruz. The Segundo Cortez cartel has been waging war against the city, terrorizing the townsfolk, and even if his attorney brother has made efforts to get Nolano involved in the campaign against the cartel, he’s never felt inclined to commit. But after two days of violence orchestrated by the cartel, with the aid of government and the police, the professor knows he must make a choice. But is he up for the consequences?
Chadwick Wall begins the story with great heat, with Professor Nolan rescuing one of his students from the grip of cartel members in a restaurant. A great opening for an action packed novel, but the pace doesn’t slow down a bit and the reader is pulled from one electrifying scene to the next, into a whirlwind of action that escalates very fast. The conflict is well handled and it is explored at multiple levels, but the most arresting one is the psychological conflict within the protagonist, the struggle with his inner resistance to get involved in the fight against crime. The characters are real and readers can feel them in the skillfully crafted dialogues and the appropriate descriptions. The prose in The Second Cortez makes for a riveting reading experience. Chadwick Wall creates very compelling characters and put them into action against the backdrop of vivid settings. A great treat for readers who enjoy crisp and tight writing and cunningly plotted stories.