Sunday, February 10, 2013

Review: ALREADY GONE by John Rector

Already GoneReese has an unsavoury past – one that he’d put behind him as he concentrated on being a good husband, author, and teacher at a University. However, when a violent encounter by two unknown assailants leaves him with a digit less, he presumes his former criminal ways are back to ruin his peaceful existence. He was part right.

ALREADY GONE wastes no time in delivering the drama. From the outset author John Rector grabs the reader’s attention and never fails to let go. The story takes a few twists and turns and ultimately catches you off guard. It’s the sort of crime novel you wish every crime novel was; tightly plotted, explosive, unpredictable, yet emotionally deep. The portrayal of Reese and Diane’s marriage is multi faceted, all at once wholesome, tragic, a sham, and meaningful. The personal element added to the over crime and ensured each subsequent action was not without cause regardless of how suspect it seemed (re: Gabby).

What I love about ALREADY GONE is that the villain isn’t easily identifiable throughout the novel. Sure Gabby (former crim and father figure to Jake), Lisa (fortune teller), Diane (Jake’s wife and art dealer), Briggs (art collector, bad man) etc all have a shadier side to them, some more noticeable than others but all fit the role in some form or another. Even the ending doesn’t truly account for the actions of certain characters – did they do it for the betterment of themselves or are they genuinely good people caught in a bad situation, or perhaps the bad guys are misunderstood? Either way, this constant guesswork post reading (and while reading) leaves me very satisfied. I like that - for me, the ending is open ended and leaves much to individual interpretation – a perfect way to end a very good book.
This makes it three for three for books I've read by John Rector, with THE GROVE my favourite of a high quality bunch:
THE GROVE (my Goodreads book review)
THE COLD KISS (book info)

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