The Drifter is 31 year old Peter Ash, a former Marine Lieutenant who spent 8 years deployed Peter fought in two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan Having been schooled in economics, Peter should have returned home to a bright future, but instead he has returned with PTSD, in the form of a white static in his head, which triggers a panic attack from acute claustrophobia Peter can no longer spend time indoors, in crowds, or in brightly lit areas, so he has spent the last 12 months on the trails of Northern Washington hiking and sleeping under the stars.When Peter gets a call from one of his war buddies that his former sergeant and close friend Jimmy Johnson has committed suicide, he feels compelled to return to society to help out the man s family Jimmy has left behind a wife, Dinah and his two boys Charlie and Miles As Peter sleeps in his truck at night, he begins to help Dinah with repairs to her home during the day He starts work on Dinah s porch and makes two unwanted discoveries The first is a dog the meanest, ugliest dog he s ever laid eyes on The second discovery is a suitcase filled with explosives and 400000.00 in cash, leading Peter on a quest to find out what Jimmy was up to in his final days The Drifter focuses on the many things that happen to war veterans when they try to resume their normal lives, treating their plight with sensitivity and at the same time, educating us on the realities that they have to face Peter s character was well fleshed out I loved his interaction with the dog a lot, along with his sense of humor He rescues this dog that will most likely try to tear his head off, and tries his hardest not to hurt it Then, when he gets it out from under the porch, he immediately thinks of naming the mangy male dog Daisy or Cupcake The storyline was wrapped up tidily, while at the same time leaving room for character growth in the next book of the series I want to thank the publisher G.P Putnam s Sons for providing me with the ARC through the Goodreads Giveaways program for an honest review. This review can also be found at Carole s Random Life.I enjoyed this one a lot I love a good mystery with a lot of action and The Drifter definitely qualifies on both counts This book has that something extra that I am always looking for in a book The characters in this book really make it come alive I found that the time I spent reading this book went very quickly because I was so engrossed in the story This was exactly the kind of book that I love to read.Peter is veteran and is finding adjustment to civilian life to be a challenge He is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder which seems to manifest as extreme claustrophobia anytime he finds himself indoors When he finds out about the death of his Marine friend, he comes to help out his wife in any way he can He starts out by doing a few home repairs but he soon finds something under the porch that changes everything.I thought that the best thing about this book was the characters without a doubt Peter s character was written in a way that showed both his strengths and his weaknesses I had a lot of respect for Peter during the course of this story After everything he has been through, he is still fights for what is right Dinah has also been through a lot in dealing with her husband s death after his return from serving overseas She is kind, responsible, and tough when she needed to be Lewis really grew on me as the story progressed and I absolutely loved him by the end of the book Mingus was an awesome character This dog brought a lotto the story than I could have ever guessed I really enjoyed the way that this book was written It started out with a lot of excitement and even a bit of humor and it never dragged The story unfolded bit by bit with the mystery slowly unraveling I couldn t make any kind of guess as to where everything was going until it happened There was a lot of action and the book kept a rather high level of excitement with excellent pacing I liked the fact that we saw quick glimpses from the point of view of the bad guys in the story but not enough to give any of the plot away.I would highly recommend this book to fans of mystery thrillers I am actually quite surprised to learn that this book is Nicholas Petrie s debut novel I am looking forward to reading future works from this very talented author I received an advance reader edition of this book from Penguin Group Putnam G.P Putnam s Sons via NetGalley for the purpose of providing an honest review. An Explosive Thriller Debut Introducing Peter Ash, A Veteran Who Finds That The Demons Of War Aren T Easily Left BehindPeter Ash Came Home From The Wars In Iraq And Afghanistan With Only One Souvenir What He Calls His White Static, The Buzzing Claustrophobia Due To Post Traumatic Stress That Has Driven Him To Spend A Year Roaming In Nature, Sleeping Under The Stars But When A Friend From The Marines Commits Suicide, Ash Returns To Civilization To Help The Man S Widow With Some Home Repairs Under Her Dilapidated Porch, He Finds Than He Bargained For The Largest, Ugliest, Meanest Dog He S Ever Encountered And A Samsonite Suitcase Stuffed With Cash And Explosives As Ash Begins To Investigate This Unexpected Discovery, He Finds Himself At The Center Of A Plot That Is Far Larger Than He Could Have Imagined And It May Lead Straight Back To The World He Thought He D Left For Good Suspenseful And Thrilling, And Featuring A Compelling New Hero, The Drifter Is An Exciting Debut From A Fresh Voice In Crime Fiction The stress effects of war are brought home when Peter Ash returns from two lengthy stints in the Middle East His PTSD symptoms manifest themselves as panic attacks, welling up inside him as a white static, and resulting in acute claustrophobia Home can be nothing but the wide open spaces and the open cab of his pickup truck The skills he developed as a Marine are tremendous and his capabilities are finely honed He simply cannot tolerate being inside except for short periods of time This wreaks havoc on almost every aspect of his life The opening chapter is gripping as Peter attempts to retrieve a huge snarling beast from underneath a rotting porch You can almost smell the fear and rage of the animal Later in the story, a visit to the car wash is not to be missed Don t look back, Jack Reacher you are going to find your rear view mirror is full of Peter Ash and he is gaining on you I loved this character, and Mingus stole my soul away.I do believe this new author has a winner on his hands Net Galley furnished this ARC to me for the price of a review Thank you because for a soldier who d spent eight years at war, not owning a weapon was like a writer emptying his house of pens Marine Peter Ash is resigned to living in the mountains out of a backpack far away from the so called civilized world After multiple tours of duty, Peter has returned to the U.S but suffers from a debilitating claustrophobia characterized by a white static However, he decides to travel to Milwaukee after hearing of the suicide of fellow Marine Jimmy Johnson Feeling that he somehow failed his friend, Peter goes to Jimmy s family to help with home repairs When he finds a mysterious suitcase under the porch he is repairing, the discovery leads him to investigate what happened to his friend and what secret his friend was hiding This novel is fast paced and suspenseful The characters are interesting, and it s not so easy to differentiate between the good guys and the bad The novel could be adequately described as gritty in terms of setting, plot, and language The author incorporates relevant topics including PTSD, economic struggles, corruption, and domestic terrorism Thanks to the author for creating the memorable character of Charles Mingus. Full disclosure I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review Many thanks to NetGalley and PENGUIN GROUP Putnam for making it available I ve said in previous reviews that when I read great thrillers, I often think of my late father, with whom I would trade recommendations of books in this genre Boy, would he have loved this one Balancing tightly wound suspense, crackling action, and excellent character development, Nicholas Petrie s The Drifter is the type of book for which series and action films are made.Peter Ash is a veteran of both Iraq and Afghanistan, who returned home after multiple tours of duty plagued by white static serious claustrophobia brought on from the traumatic stress of combat It s so bad he can barely stand to be indoors forthan a few minutes, which is why he spent the last year traveling the country, sleeping outside.When he learns that Jimmy, one of his friends from his days in the Marines, committed suicide, he is overcome with guilt that he never tried to see him or make sure he was doing okay To repay his perceived debt, Peter returns to the regular world to help Jimmy s widow and their children by doing some repairs to their house As he starts fixing the dilapidated porch, Peter discovers that living under the house is the ugliest, meanest dog he has ever seen, and no one is quite sure where it came from.Underneath the house Peter also finds an old suitcase full of money and explosives It s not long before he realizes that there have been people watching Jimmy s house, trying to find where he hid the money which puts Peter and Jimmy s family in harm s way And as Peter tries to understand just what Jimmy might have gotten himself into, he discovers people willing to help veterans like himself, and he finds both unlikely allies and very dangerous, unlikely enemies Who can he trust, and of whom should he be wary From the very start Petrie reels you into the book, and doesn t let you off the hook until the very end Peter is a complex, fascinating character, and Petrie really did his research on the challenges veterans have faced after returning home Even though I had suspicions about where the plot might go, I couldn t stop reading this, and definitely felt my pulse quickening as I raced toward the ending The Drifter is a tremendously self assured debut, and I ll definitely be watching for what comes next from Nicholas Petrie I hope that this was just the first book in a series featuring Peter Ash he s a character who deserves to become as familiar as Jack Reacher and others See all of my reviews at Ex Marine Peter Ash had to search buildings full of danger during his tours in Iraq and Afghanistan Now, the war veteran cannot stay indoors without feeling a white static , a feeling of panic and claustrophobia When he hears that his war buddy, Jimmy, has committed suicide, he leaves the great outdoors to come help his widow, Dinah While doing repairs on Dinah s house, he finds Mingus, a large, mean, snarling, smelly dog, under her porch as well as a suitcase of money He sees that an armed man is watching Dinah s house, and tries to unearth the story behind the money and Jimmy s death The suitcase full of cash is only the tip of the iceberg in a sinister plot.This is a riveting, fast paced thriller with a complex main character Peter Ash has the skills of an accomplished Marine, someone you would want on your side in a fight He also has a big heart and a sense of honor His sidekick Mingus is unforgettable Nicholas Petrie has created some engaging characters, and writes snappy dialogue well His incorporation of several characters with PTSD added a lot to the book I liked this book so much that I ll be sure to look for his next Peter Ash thriller, Burning Bright, which will be published in January 2017.Thanks to First Reads, Penguin Random House, and Putnam for a copy of the book for the purpose of providing an honest review. A gripping and well plotted thriller by an accomplished author Peter Ash is back from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars suffering from PTSD He has panic attacks known as white static and he experiences extreme claustrophobia He lives outdoors surviving with the skills acquired in the marines.Following the suicide of a colleague and friend, a guilt ridden Peter goes to Minnesota to help the widow by fixing up the house Encountering a dog from hell and finding a mysterious suitcase filled with money and explosives Peter goes on a dangerous and bloody trail with ruthless foes.A well written, entertaining book with a exciting suspense driven narrative A thriller that is thoroughly recommended An author to watch out for, he can only get better Many thanks to Penguin Group Puttnam for a copy of the book via netgalley. The Drifter is a terrific fast paced crime thriller debut by Nicholas Petrie The main character, Peter Ash, is a returning Marine Lieutenant from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars Peter is a veteran with claustrophobic issues He is unable to stay inside houses or buildings without a sense of panic Instead he sleeps under the stars.When learning that a marine under his former command has supposedly killed himself, he travels to his friends home to help out his widow and kids First on his list is to rebuild her porch where he finds a filthy huge dog and a suitcase full of money and explosives From there all hell breaks loose.The Drifter s storyline which centers around veterans and their difficulties fitting back into society is a good one There are some very good military characters that interact with Peter Ash throughout the book with excellent dialogue Most hilarious is when Charles Mingus, the super huge dog, jumps into the story I laughed throughout the book at all his antics.Written similar to the Jack Reacher novels, I highly recommend this very entertaining debut.4 out of 5 starsThanks to Netgalley and Penguin Group Putnam for the copy of this book. I just love character led stories where the reader is introduced to the lead protagonist s in a way that s entertaining, informative and engaging in the sense that you become invested in their fate And I think this is a brilliant example In the very first scene we meet Peter Ash, a war veteran, who is trying to extract a huge, vicious dog from below a rickety porch whilst at the same time trying to avoid being maimed by or doing damage to the dog It s really well done and at the end of it I really had a sense for the man he s helpful it wasn t his porch or his dog , considerate he pulled the dog out instead of shooting it , brave and strong well, you ll have to read the book to see exactly how he did it From this point, the author fleshed out the lead character superbly the war veteran who suffers from acute claustrophobia, to the point white static invades his very being every time he enters a building of any shape or form To combat this, he sleeps outdoors or in the cab of his renovated truck and avoids the interior of buildings as much as is humanly possible Thereafter Petrie brings each character we meet to life with the same skill and dexterity It s a book that paint pictures of people who feel real, who have a history and who act in a way that just feels right For a first novel I really think this is a significant achievement.The story itself is compelling too, with Peter looking to help out a family following the suicide of an ex colleague and friend There is a discovery during the dog extraction that feeds the rest of the plot and leads him into contact and possible conflict with an array of potentially lethal characters But it always is the characters at the forefront, with the narrative trotting along just behind And that s the way I like it The climax of the book is exciting and I like the way the it constantly switches view so we see events unfolding through the eyes of multiple characters It adds to the sense of pace and drama However, if I were to be critical I d say that this part does feels a bit rushed, with the ending almost coming too early and the tale being wrapped up too quickly.A great debut, though, from an obviously talented writer One to watch out for Thank you to Putnam Books and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.