Bad Luck City is a family crime drama of sorts, soaked in whisky and noir that doesn't shy away from the brutal realities of criminal enterprise.
Quasi PI, Sim Palmer, a journalist by trade with long links to life on the other side of the blue line courtesy of his father's less than lawful past (albeit from a bystander viewpoint), finds himself immersed in a world of bullets and beatings as he helps a stranger search for a missing young woman; one who could be tied to a people trafficking story Sim had written some time ago.
The all too easy manner by which Sim goes about his business didn't work all that well for this reader. Killing reads as second nature for someone who, prior to this event, lived the relatively non-threatening life of a journalist; warring with words for a local rag over putting people in actual body bags (as a youth he'd witnessed his father taking a beating and toting a gun but Sim himself hadn't dabbled in violence until this event).
There's also the case of the bartender working for a Hotel tycoon wannabe in Gloria, who appears throughout the novella only to be forgotten in the latter stages. What happened to her? I think the action and blood letting took precedent to her plot angle in this instance.
While not adding anything new to long term readers of the genre, Bad Luck City is a pacey read with a plot laced with a constant stream of action and enough character back-story to make the twists, ebbs and flows work.
I was provided a copy of the book by the author in exchange for an honest review.