This second in the series is marginally better, if only because we know the characters. Also the book's cut up in larger chunks that aren't as repetitive of action as in the first. Still, the characters tend to be very "cardboard," either very saintly or total villains. The ending is a complete cliffhanger that will require reading book 3, clearly Archer's intent. A guilty pleasure; I read the large print version in 24 hrs.