The Diplomatic Surveillance Group is a contract arm of the FBI. The job is simple. Watch diplomats that the FBI is curious about and report back what/where/when said diplomat is doing. Depending on the mark dictates the extent of the surveillance.
John Corey, former NYDP detective, former Joint Anti-Terrorist Task Force, and probably 'former' a couple other corners of law enforcement, is now a part of the DSG and in charge of a team watching Vasily Petrov of the Soviet mission to the UN. Supposedly he's part of the mission's HR office. But given that his daddy is part of the old KGB and Vasily is a Colonel with lots of lethal experience in Chechnya, it's not likely he's logging hours and checking employee benefits.
It's a Sunday morning in September. John has a new trainee with him, Tess Faraday, and they sit in their Blazer outside of the Soviet mission offices. Got a couple more agents in another car and more on foot. A car and driver are idling in front of the offices waiting for Petrov to go somewhere, anywhere. When Petrov appears, another HR underling (Viktor Gorsky, a known compatriot of Petrov and skilled assassin) and an unknown third looked to be dressed for a late summer beach party. Photos are taken and relayed back to John's bosses to ID the third guy.
Now these diplomats are limited to a 25 mile radius from the mission offices and when the car crosses over to Long Island and keeps driving, everyone's radar becomes more sensitive. This little line of cars heads far east out toward the Hamptons eventually entering the estate of Georgi Tamorov, one of those Russian oligarchs who got obscenely rich with the fall of the Soviet Union. And it is a party. Lots of Russians, prostitutes, loud music, booze, sun, and sand. The third guy is ID'd as a Dr. Urmanov, Russian nuclear physicist who, by the way, managed to enter the US under an alias.
Corey is the very definition of an 'ask for forgiveness, not permission' type and routinely acts by the seat of his pants (and probably why he has 'former' multiple times on his resume). The party is being catered so he and Tess corner the caterer into hiring two more employees for the day. The DSG is to surveil and not lose the target, so he needed to get on the property.
The party goes along for the day, but Petrov, Gorsky and Urmanov are sitting off and not socializing or drinking, the latter of which apparently is highly unusual for a Russian. Around sunset, an unmarked amphibious vehicle rolls up to the beach. The now three persons of interest board along with about a dozen of the ladies.
Supposedly headed for another party. This time aboard the massive luxury yacht belonging to a Prince of the Saudi royal family. But John's charge is to surveil and not lose his subject, so he calls on the local harbor police to search for the boat and it's destination, but it just disappears and the lineup of ships queueing up to enter New York harbors presents John with a needle in the haystack quandary especially when the yacht turns off all electronics and identity beacons effectively going dark to all authorities.
By the way, that Dr. Urmanov is an expert in miniaturizing electronics and things controlled by those miniature electronics.
I love DeMille and have read a number of his books over the years, mostly pre-blog. DeMille's not a member of the book-a-year club so when something new is released, it's probably worth the wait. He wrote what I think is one of the best espionage books ever, The Charm School (a must read for lovers of the genre). This is about #5 in his John Corey series and Corey is one of the more fascinating continuing characters going. A lovable cad who has no filter whatsoever with friends and foe alike. He says what we all wish we could think quick enough to say and acts decisively from gut instinct that only an NYPD detective can.
When I saw DeMille had a new book out, a Corey book at that, I quickly reserved it from the library. But with most every DeMille book, I hold my breath when I finally get it because DeMille has a history of these 600+ page monsters. But this one, at a brisk 308 pages, is practically a novella by DeMille's standards. And the 308 pages takes Corey from mid morning Sunday toward a 846am Monday deadline. Take my advice. Clear out a day or two for this book because you're not likely to be engaged in much else. DeMille tells one helluva a story that damn well better never happen.
East Coast Don