Godless Country

Alaric Hunt. Minotaur, $25.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-250-06753-1
Hunt’s uneven second mystery pairing veteran New York City PI Clayton Guthrie and his sidekick, Rachel Vasquez (after 2013’s Cuts Through Bone), meticulously portrays Vasquez, a reckless young woman still recovering from the emotional trauma of a shoot-out. Her tumultuous relationship with NYPD Investigative Services officer Tommy Johnson adds depth. But Guthrie—whose new job is to protect a philanthropic Manhattan heiress from a stalker—is described simply and repetitively as the “little detective.” In addition, the stalker—a giant “fairy tale ogre” with genius intelligence—never becomes more than a caricature. While Hunt is spot on with his hard-boiled tone and gritty atmospherics, the inexplicably unbalanced characterization of the two main characters is coupled with a largely lackluster plot, which expands to connect the murder of lawyers working at a Bronx law firm with Mexican organized crime, making this an emotionally unengaging read. Hunt is currently serving a life sentence at a South Carolina prison. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 06/22/2015
Release date: 08/25/2015
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-4668-7588-3
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