All He Has Left
Thriller / Suspense
Setting – Texas
Thomas & Mercer (April 1, 2023)
Paperback : 207 pages
ISBN-10 : 1662504292
ISBN-13 : 978-1662504297
Kindle ASIN : B09Q2W8M9R
After Jake Slater’s wife dies in a tragic hit-and-run, all he has left is his daughter, Piper—nearly lost, too, in a brutal custody battle with his wealthy in-laws. A year later, Jake reluctantly agrees to a reunion with the estranged family for Piper’s thirteenth birthday. Then a single gunshot rings out, and a new nightmare begins.
Piper is kidnapped, and her cousin Caitlin is murdered. Caitlin’s cryptic dying words: Piper knows the truth. Jake is the only witness to the murder—and the only suspect. For an innocent man trapped in a world conspiring to crush him, the only way to clear his name and find Piper is to do it on the run.
Crucified by the media, pursued by the FBI, and hunted by an assassin, Jake can feel his desperation escalating with every tick of the clock. The closer he gets to the truth, the more he risks uncovering family betrayals so sinister they’re worth killing for.
Jake Slater lost his wife and almost lost his daughter, Piper, in an appalling hit-and-run accident. Then his affluent inlaws fought him for custody of Piper but Jake prevailed. He packed up their life and moved away. A year later his wife’s parents want to host a party to celebrate her 13th birthday. He grudgingly allows his daughter to attend but he doesn’t stick around.
He arrives to pick Piper up at her cousin’s when he hears a gunshot. Inside he finds her cousin Caitlyn had been shot and Piper missing. Caitlyn breathlessly tells him “Piper knows the truth”, before she dies. He then sees a man taking Piper away. He gives chase but is too late. The police arrive and Jake is the only witness to what happened. From their questioning, he sees he is their prime suspect and no one appears to be concerned about Piper. He has to find her. When he gets the chance he runs.
Now his face is all over television and social media. The FBI has been brought in. And he is being tracked by a killer. He can’t let anything get in the way of finding his daughter and he has no one to trust. When the truth starts to be revealed he is blindsided but doesn’t give up. He just hopes he can survive long enough to save his daughter.
I discovered Chad Zunker last year and when I was offered this book to review I jumped at the chance.
Jake Slater loved being a high school football coach. His wife and inlaws wanted him to get involved in the family business and he turned them down. Then his life implodes. My grandsons play football and I know the dedication the coaches put into the job personally so the character of Jake resonated with me right away. I also understood his downfall on the job he loved. He returned to work too soon and didn’t allow himself time to grieve. He also had to fight his inlaws to keep his daughter which added to the stress. He did what he had to do. I felt like I was right on the emotional roller coaster with him.
Mr. Zunker sets a quick pace and uses short chapters making this book impossible to put down. Readers follow Jake through every step of this tragic story. My heart was racing almost the entire time. Jake’s mind worked in fascinating ways to stay ahead of those trying to capture him. He was on a mission and faced many obstacles. The twists would have been hard for anyone to face but he kept going to get to the truth.
My only drawback of the story was a twist that put Jake’s high school girlfriend as the FBI Agent in Charge of his capture. Her actions did not follow protocol and the ending they had was just too predictable.
All He Has Left is an action-packed story where family secrets and powerful wealthy people crash together in a powerful plot. An engaging main character quickly draws readers into his life and forces them to hang on tight until the last page.
For me, Chad Zunker is an author to watch. I am excited about his next book set to be released on February 27, 2024. The Wife You Know sounds like it’s going to be another wildly emotional and suspenseful journey.
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About the Author
CHAD ZUNKER is the author of the David Adams legal thriller, An Equal Justice, as well as The Tracker, Shadow Shepherd, and Hunt the Lion in his Sam Callahan series. Chad has worked for some of the country’s most powerful law firms and serves at Community First! Village, a 51-acre master planned community that provides affordable, permanent housing and a supportive community for men and women coming out of chronic homelessness. He lives in Austin with his wife, Katie, and their three daughters, and is hard at work on his next novel. For more information visit www.chadzunker.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”