I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I judged this book based on its cover. Now, unlike some of my other reviews where I’ve mentioned that I didn’t like the cover, this book is entirely different. The cover is the thing that drew me in and made me want to read this exciting and gripping thriller from debut novelist Shane Kuhn (who can be found on Twitter as @ShaneSKuhn).
Aesthetics aside, this really is an interesting book. I don’t mean ‘oh, this is interesting‘ in a way as if to say that’s it’s not, I mean this really is interesting.
The book is written from the perspective of John Lago, a hitman-esque employee of H.R. Inc. who are responsible for ‘taking care’ of ‘unwanted’ individuals that may have gotten in the way, so to speak. From the very first word until the very last you are on John’s side, with every page and chapter you grow more fond of John, often seeing his downfalls before he does and feeling like you need to scream at the pages to tell him (well I did anyway!). Written in the style of a ‘how to’ manual for new employees of H.R. Inc, John tells us about his experiences, first hand.
H.R. Inc. are specialists in hiring the best, and only the best, hitmen to infiltrate companies on an employee level, worming their way into the inner workings and minds of the people who work there. Once fully accepted these individuals, of which John is one, proceed to take care of business and commit the acts that they are initially sent in to do. John begins by filling us in on his own situation, why he is where he is and why he does what he does before getting into the nitty-gritty of the story at hand.
Of course, things aren’t as simple as a, b, c and before you know it a business relationship (in John’s boss’ opinion) grows into a more affectionate and real relationship for John. All the while John climbs the ladder of the law firm he is stationed in, forms bonds, ties and connections with the required people all in an effort to grow closer to the intended target. One thing leads to another, things change, people die…oh and don’t forget Daddy issues!
This really is an exciting, gripping and all-out-war type book that would sit well with Tarantino fans, the world over. This has certainly opened my eyes somewhat to a new area of fiction that I’d perhaps not explored enough before. There wasn’t a single page of this that I didn’t enjoy, often reading 100+pages in one short bus journey just because it honestly is that good. Theres guns, explosions, humour, wit, charm and much more written into each page.
I was lucky enough to have got a copy of this from the lovely people at Little Brown a good two months before release but as soon as its out on 3rd July (UK) then I urge you to get a copy and let me know your thoughts.
Pre-order from Waterstones.com
Out on 03/07/2014 from Sphere (a ‘Little Brown’ imprint)