Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Dangerous Times - Phillip Frey

Frank Moore, well dressed in his camel-hair coat, is on a mission - get the money and leave town. Anyone standing in his way will be taken care of. He's not concerned if he leaves his wife Ty behind or his mistress plus he wants to be rid of Ty's uncle. It's the last errand he does for him and then freedom.

John Kirk an ex-marine and an auto-mechanic. He's haunted by his past and despite some effort, wants to lose the 'manana' attitude. Lisa, his so called girlfriend has little respect for him and his mother finds comfort in a bottle of whiskey.

Lieutenant Hicks is a troubled man. Resentful that his wife left him for a 'white-ass lawyer', he still mourns the death of his son and has pangs of guilt for taking a bribe - kind of; the money is going to help him get out of San Pedro.

The lives of these three men become entwined in a dark and twisted tale of deceit, greed and murder. And it all starts with Frank assuming the identity of John Kirk. Frank's executes his plan with simplicity and cunning not aware that his scheme is unraveling. Remarkably, it still works out in his favor - or does it? A complete domino effect, Franks determination to get his money leaves behind a trail of destruction. Will he be able to succeed and walk away from it all unscathed?

A complex and tangled web of a story, Dangerous Times is a novel that keeps giving until the dramatic ending. Frey's characters are vibrant with great depth. He has created a hero of sorts with John Kirk, but I'm sure readers will find themselves willing Frank to be successful with his plan - I did. He's not particularly likable - no-one really is but that's the charm with this novel. One life is revealed as being connected with another and as Frey leads you down one path, you end up somewhere completely different.

I really enjoyed this book. It unravels at a steady pace and as the tension intensifies so does the intricacies of the plot. As I went from one chapter to the next, I kept wondering how is this going to end? Frey has created a tense, enthralling thriller with elements of a harsh criminal underworld and yet there are moments of tenderness. With simple, clean descriptions, its a story of  'everyday' people's fears, hatred and willingness to survive - no matter what. A highly recommended read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author to review. The opinions expressed are my own and I am not expected to give a positive critique.

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