Now this is the Lawrence Block I know and love – giving us readers a well written short story he self-published on Amazon with no cover for $1.98. A couple of days ago I’d asked the author on Twitter if there was another John Keller story in the works. The author pointed me to “Keller in Dallas” as a continuation from the last book “Hit and Run” that gives us a glimpse of what life has been like for our former and likable but lonely hit man for hire first introduced in a collection of short stories in Hit Man in 1998. Well, Keller now lives in New Orleans with his wife and young daughter. He works for a company that helps finance and restore dilapidated homes in the aftermath of Katrina.
One day Keller gets a call from his old partner, Dot, asking him if he’s interested in an assignment. Dot had someone lined up but it didn’t work out. Keller and Dot argue and talk like an old married couple. I enjoy their dialogue/exchanges. Anyway, the timing couldn’t be better. Business has dried up and Keller hasn’t had any work for a while. He’s been focusing a lot of his time adding to his stamp collection. He’s an international collector and it’s his passion. He almost always has with him the tools for his hobby including a perforation gauge and his bible on stamp collecting: the Scott’s Catalog. Continue reading
Who is this that comes from Edom, coming from Bozrah, his garments stained crimson? Who is this, in his glorious apparel, marching in the greatness of his strength? ‘It is I, who announce that right has won the day, it is I,’ says the Lord, ‘for I am mighty to save you.’- Isaiah 63:1
The powers that be at Random House (U.S.) decided to publish The Snowman (2011) over The Redeemer. American audiences were blown away and the book landed on the NYT bestseller list. The Snowman has a lot more action in it on a grand scale and it features a serial killer and we like serial killers over here or so I heard. Meanwhile, The Redeemer is coming out sometime next year I hear.
To me The Redeemer is the best of Jo Nesbø’s work. Why? I recall reading an interview where the author stated that creating the antagonist was one of the hardest parts of the writing process (among others) because this person has to come across as being credible for the reader. Well, he nailed that in this book. Continue reading
Title: Torpedo (vo.1)
Year Published: 2009
Length: 143 pages
Setting: 1930′s New York
Book Source: Bought (used)
This is the “Godfather” in a serial comic. Luca Torelli aka “Torpedo” is a contract killer, working for the mob in 1930′s New York. He’s a cold, calculating, double-crossing gangster. He’s about the most amoral character I’ve seen grace the comic book pages (speaking of my experience only). The stories follow Torpedo and his friend, Rascal as they take on the most difficult of cases. The stories are well written, violent, dark (obviously) with black humor. The artwork is in B&W with translation by Jimmy Palmiotti. IDW published this book but it’s now unavailable. The cover is arresting I thought and stoked my curiosity. After about 40 pages in, I can see why this series is so popular. Note: There is additional artwork in this collection from Abulí’s first collaborator, Alex Toth.