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Critical Space (2001)

Code-named Drama, she is a lightning-fast death machine—a hitwoman sought by intelligence agencies around the world. Drama kills as easily as she breathes. The last time she met Atticus Kodiak, they barely escaped each other alive. This time, Drama is the one who is running from a killer. She needs Atticus’s help, and blackmails him to get it. From New York’s Russian enclaves to the Swiss Alps and the Caribbean, Atticus becomes Drama’s only hope for survival as she tries to outrun her bloody past. But what Drama needs from him will destroy his reputation—and siding with her means he can never turn back.

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Release information

Bantam US hardcover October 2001
Piatkus UK hardcover November 2001 0749905875
Piatkus UK paperback November 2002 0749933275
Bantam US paperback June 2003 0553581791
Bantam US e-Book June 2003 0553897179


A skillfully orchestrated cat-and-mouse game during which cat and mouse have a most entertaining way of switching roles…. Deftly plotted, elegantly written: might just be the thriller of the year.—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

The pace is good and the plot compelling. Best of all, Rucka’s protagonists are well-rounded and sympathetic, convincingly resourceful and refreshingly low-key. Solidarity and friendship are as important as weaponry and tactics in this satisfying, character-driven thriller.
—Publishers Weekly

Put Rucka on the short ‘must read’ list.
—The Philadelphia Inquirer