Wednesday 27 December 2017

Book ~ "Parting Shot" (2017) Linwood Barclay

From Goodreads ~ If you made a mistake that took someone's life, you'd remember it ... wouldn't you?

After a tragedy rocks the community of Promise Falls, Cal Weaver is asked to investigate the threats being made to the accused's family. He's heard all about it on the news: the young man who drank too much, stole a Porsche and killed a girl and who claimed afterwards not to remember a single thing. The whole town is outraged that he got off lightly but for reasons Cal can't explain, he accepts the job. Then Cal finds himself caught up in a vicious revenge plot, chasing someone set on delivering retribution. In Cal's experience, it's only ever a matter of time before threats turn into action. 

Brian Gaffney wanders into the police station in Promise Falls claiming he had been abducted, possibly by aliens.  Detective Duckworth initially doesn't believe him but when the man shows him his back, Duckworth discovers a crude tattoo with a message.  As Duckworth hears Gaffney's story, it reminds him of another similar experience someone else recently had so he goes off to investigate to see if the two victims are linked somehow.

Cal Weaver is a private detective who has been hired to protect Jeremy Pilford.  Jeremy was recently acquitted on charges of killing his friend.  They had been partying, got drunk and Jeremy ran her over with the party host's car, killing her instantly.  Jeremy's lawyer got him off with the defense that he had been coddled by his mother all his life and didn't understand the consequences of his actions.  He became known as the "Big Baby" and the target of threats.

Duckworth and Weaver were characters in Barclay's Promise Falls trilogy, which I'd read but wasn't crazy about. I  enjoyed this book a lot more.  There are references to things that happened in the trilogy but this book is independent of that and works as a stand alone.

I've read many books by this author over the years ... some I've liked a lot and some not so much. I like the writing style in this one and was okay with the switching of perspectives ... sometimes it was third person perspective with the focus on wherever the action was and sometimes it was first person perspective (in Detective Duckworth's voice). As a head's up, there is swearing and violence.

I liked the main characters, Duckworth and Weaver, and would be interested if the author started a new series with these two (I can see that happening).  I think they could work well together.  I wasn't crazy about Duckworth's son, Trevor.  Though he is an adult, he acted like a child at times.

The author is Canadian and the references to Canada are fun ... like Cal having a Toronto Blue Jays ball cap in his car.

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