Current Assets

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Darcy Farthing is enjoying her part-time home on Marco Island in South Florida while she works on her new manuscript; a book describing her latest ill-fated cruise. Boyfriend, Mick Clayton is conducting a supposedly routine GAO investigation of asset forfeitures; property the U.S. Marshals and sheriff’s departments seize from criminals. Mick and Darcy are thrown into mystery and violence when their friend and compatriot, Tom Smythe, is accused of attempted murder of a deputy sheriff responsible for safeguarding the seized property. In trying to help Tom, Darcy and her daughter, Rachael, become targets of threats and violence.

It soon becomes apparent that corruption in the sheriff’s department is strangely intertwined with a terrorist smuggling cell. As Mick is reluctantly drawn into a criminal investigation and Tom tries to extricate himself from his legal nightmare, someone begins to murder sheriff’s deputies believed to be involved in the scheme. Finally, Mick and Darcy risk more violence when they embark on a short cruise aboard a mega-million-dollar yacht suspected as being involved in the terrorism and smuggling. Even when these problems resolve, they still must contend with a surprising and controversial family crisis that Rachael literally brings to their doorstep from Kenya.

Book Review:

“I love authors who take their real-life experiences and incorporate the knowledge gained from those experiences into their writing, especially those who have worked within the Criminal Justice system or Government agencies. Arleen Alleman has clearly drawn from her time as an analyst with the Government Accountability Office to create this incredible novel. It is so very believable and I appreciate the research it must have required to bring such a thrilling story to life. “Current Assets” is written with such conviction that I’m not certain it is entirely fiction. The story is so well-crafted and plays out with such intrigue and higher level corruption that it could easily be perceived as a true-crime novel. Darcy is an amazing character and written in a way that shows her tremendous intellect, strength, and vulnerabilities.

Though I have not read Arleen Alleman’s previous books in this particular series there is enough information and backstory provided that this novel alone makes for a fully satisfying read. However, I will be reading the others in the series because I simply must know more about Darcy’s character. There are no lulls in the story and it was extremely difficult for me to find a stopping point because I couldn’t resist reading just one more chapter which turned into five more before I knew it. The characters and scenes are richly and vividly penned, giving the reader a multi-dimensional view of the people and places that are woven together to create such an incredibly thrilling tale. I truly enjoy books that can make me feel the danger and suspense and “Current Assets” does exactly that. This is a great read for anyone that enjoys mystery, thrillers, crime, high-level intrigue, dirty dealings, and gritty, intelligent suspense. This is the kind of book that stays with you long after you finish reading the last page (and one I will definitely think about on my next cruise out of Florida).” –G. Jackson

Current Assets

Chapter 1

Mick drove down Annex Street in the town of SandyRidge, checking addresses while also trying to observe the traffic. During the last few minutes, he let his mind wander over the astonishing events of the past couple of years. He couldn’t help experiencing these daydreams now and then, especially when driving in familiar territory where his full mental commitment was not required. He was still sorting through the debris left by the trauma while at the same time experiencing elation over the positive changes, especially with respect to the new people in his life.

A warm, contented feeling accompanied his thoughts of Darcy, the woman who completely changed his life for the better. Their relationship was only the beginning though. Since overcoming some serious emotional problems, he had started asking himself how he ever lived a full life before. The answer, of course, was that he hadn’t been enjoying life for several years prior to meeting Darcy on the cruise ship two years ago. Along with the good, there had been violence and upheaval . . . at least now that was all behind them.

Peering through the windshield at the sign on the corner of Annex and Beech, he quickly checked his mirror and flipped down the turn signal. Crossing into the driveway of the Geneva County Sheriff’s Office, he noticed Tom’s car parked in a spot at the back of the lot. Smiling to himself, he steered the new white Lexus LX next to the beautiful silver Range Rover that used to be his. He happily gave the car to Tom Smythe just as he was gratified to help him find this job. After everything Tom did to help Mick through dark times and to bring a dangerous would-be killer to justice, the car and employment seemed the least he could do for his friend.

As he gathered up his briefcase, phone, and jacket from the passenger seat, he became vaguely aware of the increasing blare of an approaching police or emergency siren. Within seconds, an ambulance flew into the lot. As it pulled up abruptly to the front of the building, he climbed out of his car and stood watching the action with his hand on top of the open door. Then he stretched his arms over his head and studied the tiny building, thinking that the red brick colonial-style facade looked a little out of place forSouth Florida.

Even in November, approaching midday, the sun shone hot and bright; and after the air-conditioned car, the outside air was stifling. He closed the door, clicked the remote lock, and jogged toward the building, only mildly concerned about the presence of the paramedics. They were obviously on a serious mission, though; and by the time he reached the steps leading up to the white-painted double doors, they were already rushing up, loaded down with medical equipment. He sprinted up the steps and stepped to the side so that he could hold the door open, then followed them into the cool interior.


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