The Chain by Adrian McKinty
When a mother is targeted by a dangerous group of masterminds, she must commit a crime to save her kidnapped daughter -- or risk losing her forever -- in this "propulsive and original" thriller (Stephen King).
It's something parents do every morning: Rachel Klein drops her daughter at the bus stop and heads into her day. But a cell phone call from an unknown number changes everything: it's a woman on the line, informing her that she has Kylie bound and gagged in her back seat, and the only way Rachel will see her again is to follow her instructions exactly: pay a ransom, and find another child to abduct. This is no ordinary kidnapping: the caller is a mother herself, whose son has been taken, and if Rachel doesn't do as she's told, the boy will die.
"You are not the first. And you will certainly not be the last."Rachel is now part of The Chain, an unending and ingenious scheme that turns victims into criminals -- and is making someone else very rich in the process. The rules are simple, the moral challenges impossible; find the money fast, find your victim , and then commit a horrible act you'd have thought yourself incapable of just twenty-four hours ago.
But what the masterminds behind The Chain know is that parents will do anything for their children. It turns out that kidnapping is only the beginning.
"McKinty is one of the most striking and most memorable crime voices to emerge on the scene in years. His plots tempt you to read at top speed, but don't give in: this writing -- sharply observant, intelligent and shot through with black humor -- should be savored."
-- Tana French
"A masterpiece. You have never read anything quite like The Chain and you will never be able to forget it." -- Don Winslow
"Diabolical, unnerving, and gives a whole new meaning to the word "relentless". Adrian McKinty just leapt to the top of my list of must-read suspense novelists. He's the real deal."
-- Dennis Lehane
"Pairing an irresistible concept with a winner protagonist, The Chain promises to be your new addiction once you succumb to the first enticing page."
-- Alafair Burke
"A grade-A-first-rate-edge-of-your-seat thriller. I can't believe what went through my mind while reading it." -- Attica Locke