Stone Barrington Follows a Crook to the Ends of the Earth in Stuart Woods’ ‘Criminal Mischief’ [REVIEW]

Gulfstream Jet
Stone Barrington flies to the Middle East in Criminal Mischief. (Photo courtesy Canva)

Stone Barrington doesn’t like to see crooks get off scott-free, especially when his friends are fleeced for all their money. In Criminal Mischief, Stone joins forces with the Feds in a worldwide manhunt to chase down a swindler on the run. But what will it cost him to bring the perpetrator home to pay for his crimes? Find out in the 60th volume of this long-running series.

G.P. Putnam’s Sons

Criminal Mischief starts as Stone has dinner with an attractive but spritely stranger with sticky fingers. Despite himself, he forgives his new lady friend her transgressions when he discovers that she’s unwittingly lost her money in a Ponzi scheme.

Then, to Stone’s horror, he also discovers that she’s not the only one to fall victim to this wily wolf of Wall Street. Other associates have also been duped into trusting this fraud with investing all their money too. As the Feds close in, the mastermind takes off on his plane, and soon the FBI enlists Stone and his Gulfstream to help them chase the man down.

The only problem with this strategy is that this villainous thug proves far more evasive than anyone gave him credit for. Soon Stone, the Feds, and friends both old and new are flying around the globe determined to bring the thief home to face the music, even if doing so takes them all the way to the Middle East.

Everyone who has read this series knows three things for sure. First, each book is a fun, breezy thriller that seldom takes itself too seriously. Second, these stories are quick, delicious reads filled with glamorous settings and quirky characters. And third, Stone Barrington’s voracious appetite for beautiful women is probably only rivaled by that of James Bond. Criminal Mischief ticks all those boxes.

While this volume in the series provides a fun escape, it seems like the story is almost too lighthearted, particularly when it comes to Stone’s love life. While Stone never has a shortage of bombshells on his arm, this time out he goes through women the way he goes through Knob Creek, one after another. The odd thing is none of these ladies seems to really mind being disposable. Everyone involved just wants a good time, which became a little difficult to believe after a while.

Aside from this element of the story, however, I found Criminal Mischief to be a fun game of cat-and-mouse, with the crook always three steps ahead of Stone and his crew. Longtime fans of the series will undoubtedly enjoy this caper, especially visiting the far-flung locales in which Stone and his compadres find themselves. For anyone looking for an easy, quick read full of adventure and cheeky dialogue, this book is for you.

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About the author banner

Stuart Woods is the author of more than 90 novels.

He is a native of Georgia and began his writing career in the advertising industry.

Chiefs, his debut in 1981, won the Edgar Award.

An avid sailor and pilot, Woods lives in Key West, Mount Desert Island, and Washington Depot, Connecticut.

For more information, visit, or like him on Facebook.

Stuart Woods
Stuart Woods
(Photo courtesy Jeanmarie Woods)

By Stuart Woods
320 pp. G.P. Putnam’s Sons. $28.

Purchase Criminal Mischief direct from Jathan & Heather Books or from one of these other fine online retailers: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Half Price Books, Hudson Booksellers, IndieBound, Powell’s, Target, or Walmart.

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

One Response to Stone Barrington Follows a Crook to the Ends of the Earth in Stuart Woods’ ‘Criminal Mischief’ [REVIEW]

  1. Martin Eitel says:

    Based on the number of books and the passage of time, Stone is over one hundred years old and even Viagara could not work the magic in the book. And 007 was nowhere as promiscuous as Stone.

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