Title: Fair Warning
Author: Michael Connelly
Publication Date: May 26, 2020
Genre: Detective thriller
"A book inside a reality show wrapped around an echidna.
Best-selling author Michael Connelly revives a character, a tough investigative reporter named Jack McEvoy, and sends him to work for Fair Warning, an L.A. news site that pursues consumer protection issues. Joined by ex-FBI agent Rachel Walling, McEvoy tracks down a serial killer who has been hacking and using the information sold by DNA databases like 23andme.com and Ancestry to target women with a particular genetic profile. The privacy issue is the consumer protection angle. That gets a little lost in the serial killer theme. In the end... well, you don't want to know the end. But suffice it to say all is set right, mostly.
The book is compelling in a page-turning sense. It is, shall we say, plot-driven. And it clearly subscribes to the heretical notion that depraved sex and violence are more likely to sell books than are consumer privacy violations. But it's well-crafted, and it qualifies for that underpopulated category, the consumer protection detective novel.
(And then there's this: There really is an LA news site called Fair Warning. Michael Connelly sits on its Board. And it really investigated DNA collecting websites. But in early 2021 -- just as it might have been reaping the rewards of publicity from Connelly's novel -- the organization posted a farewell message. The plot thickens....)"