No Man's Land is David Baldacci's fourth book in the John Puller Series. The prolific lawyer turned NYTimes bestselling novelist has a plethora of series novels in his impressive collection.
CID Special Agent John Puller Jr., younger son of the well-respected and equally feared retired 3-star General John Puller Sr., is visiting his father slipping deeper into Alzheimer's when he's informed that 30 years after his mother, the general's wife, mysteriously disappeared one evening that the general is a suspect in her murder. No trace of her has ever been found.
A dying friend of his mother's, married to a man devoted to the general after serving under his command, has mailed a letter to the Army to inform them of her suspicions much to her husband's complete disagreement. John Puller Jr. sets off to talk to the woman to discover why she has accused his father this many years later. This visit is the beginning of a harrowing investigation for which John Jr. can be prosecuted and lose his career. It doesn't take his keen investigative skills long to turn up an intense effort to cover up everything to do with his missing mother.
Along the way he's joined by a former friend and a US Intelligence organization investigator Veronica Knox but is secretly told by a politically powerful government official to trust no one as he delves into this search for truth. Cleverly and carefully aided by his Air Force Major brother Robert, who was imprisoned but cleared of all charges, John presses on under strange circumstances that involves a building at Fort Monroe and the infamous DARPA.
Simultaneously, a man who goes by Paul Rogers is released from prison after his successful third parole hearing having served 10 years for manslaughter. He has one mission in mind and after stealing a car, he sets off across the country to Building Q to remedy what's been done to him. Unfortunately, a few people get in his way and suffer the consequences.
What John Puller learns about his mom and dad while seeking to find out what really happened to her leads him and Knox to near death and bizarre connections to what was perceived to be the serial killings of three young women. Making the connections in their deaths takes them to a bar called "The Grunt", a palatial estate of a patent kingpin, and back again to DARPA. Amidst major cover-ups, they struggle to connect the dots and link what they gather to provide the truth and final information they desperately need.
David Baldacci puts together a complex tale of abject psychopathic cruelty, unfortunate timing, sorrowful results, and a seemingly unsympathetic and vicious antagonist who turns out to be an unfortunate victim in a state of no man's land. This is my first Baldacci novel. I suspect it won't be my last.
Father, please continue to bless David's life with more stories you have just for him to tell and allow him to realize where his talent originated. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.