You know the pleasant feeling when an old friend stops by for an unexpected visit?
Reading this hard to put down saga by David Corbett is as pleasant an experience as a mystery reader can expect.
Dan Abatangelo is the leader of a gang caught importing drugs but when he refuses to name other people providing the drugs he is given twice the prison sentence as his gang members. He serves a "hard ten" and is released from prison. He recently received a letter from his former girlfriend, Shel Beaudry. She had been released after five years and was trying to make it on the outside.
She meets up with Frank Mass, a pathetic recovering addict. When Frank's young son is murdered, Shel becomes Frank's security blanket and caregiver.
Frank tries for one big score and it sets off a series of events that explode across the pages.
What follows is a mad chase through the drug underworld where Mexican and US gangsters are pitted against one another in attempt to control the methamphetamine trade.
Shel is kidnapped and becomes a pawn between the two gangs and Dan sets out to rescue her, almost as if a compassionate Bruce Willis as Det. John McCane enters the story.
Dan works as a photographer and is able to photograph the horror that the
two gangs inflict upon each other. He has a plan of rescue that he hopes will free Shel and keep them both from landing back in jail.
Corbett's writing in infectious and reminiscent of Raymond Chandler, "The bartender...stood alone with his arms crossed by the side of the ice bin, nursing a tonic and water. A twelve stepper Abatangelo guessed. Ordering a dark rum neat with a soda back.
Highly recommended A-