Take good note of the genre-tag: Hardboiled. Don’t take it lightly.
This, the third in the Ed Earl Burch series, is that in spades. If you can’t take the flow of bodily fluids in all its forms, in sickness and in health until death do they depart, so God help you.
Having followed PI Ed Earl Burch’s Texas boot prints from Dallas late nineteen-eighties to the harsh beauty of the West Texas border country all the way from THE LAST SECOND CHANCE through THE RIGHT WRONG NUMBER to THE BEST LOUSY CHOICE, I see no reason to grind out the spoiler details. But concentrate; there are a lot of characters, well painted with a master’s brush that blends them beautifully with the sunburned rocks, mesquite, horses and rattlers.
Someone said Burch has the Old West sense of justice. I’d go with that. He doesn’t hold much truck with modern law, except to adroitly avoid it. He’s middle-aged, physically cracked, psychologically damaged and survives on a sharp brain, a sure .45, lots of whisky (with or without the “e”) and painkillers, and a bit of carnal care. If and when he can keep the nightmares at bay, like when he’s on a survival adrenalin high, he will probably make it through to help Jim Nesbitt provide us hardboiled junkies with a couple more unputdownables.
Loved it, especially the voice; the hard flowing chopped commentary, and the sardonic humour.
Published July 9th 2019 by Spotted Mule Press.