cover image Eddie’s Boy

Eddie’s Boy

Thomas Perry. Mysterious, $26 (288p) ISBN 978-0-8021-5777-5

Edgar-winner Perry’s superbly crafted fourth Butcher’s Boy novel (after 2011’s The Informant) opens with retired hit man Michael Schaeffer driving a car with the bodies of three inept assassins he killed earlier that night as they were breaking into the Yorkshire manor house he shares with his wife, Meg. Michael intends to find out who ordered the hit on him, and after saying goodbye to Meg, who’s fully aware of his former profession, he travels to Australia for safety. But when gunmen ambush him there as well, Michael realizes, after eliminating them with ruthless efficiency, that a trip to the States will be necessary to pinpoint the origin of the attacks. In the U.S., he seeks out Justice Department bigwig Elizabeth Waring, who once used him as an informant, and suggests a trade for info about his hunters. It soon becomes clear that the likely instigator is a Mafia don Michael helped send to prison years earlier by framing him for a murder. An immensely clever cat and mouse game he engineers involving Waring and various mob factions ensues. Perry delivers a master class in the art of propulsive tension. Agent: Mel Berger, WME. (Dec.)