Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Review: REVOLVER by Duane Swierczynski

REVOLVER is fine storytelling - seamlessly switching gears through alternating timelines to deliver a multifaceted crime tale, steadily increasing in complexity as the narrative unfolds. Spanning three generations each enveloped in heady blood red mist of murder and mystery surrounding the deaths of Philadelphia cops Stan Walczak and George Wildey in 1965, Swierczynski ensures his fictitious bullet fired some 50years past is still dangerous in the present.

Audrey is a CSI in training, studying her craft from afar, the family outcast is cast into the spotlight when she seeks to uncover the truth surrounding her grandfather’s murder in 1965. With her father (Jim) a cop and brother (Stas), her keen eye and inherent internal compass for justice (albeit a justice that feels slightly out of character) is right on point. What she discovers is just as destructive now as that day when her grandfather and his partner were gunned down. This time it’s not bullets raining down on her family but syrupy secrets and morbid revelations.  

The route REVOLVER takes is not conventional and that’s one of its biggest drawcards. Linking different timelines through a single act of violence without giving away the motivation while embedding a complex family drama element is satisfying reading when done right – luckily it is here.

Readers of Swierczynki’s previous works will see REVOLVER as somewhat of a departure from what’s come before and a progression in his crime fiction prowess. While being a self-contained story, the door is left ajar for further exploration into the Walczak world – fingers crossed Swierczynski revisits it again at some stage.

Rating: 4/5 stars

Would I re-read? Yes

Fiction Filed under: Crime, Cop Story, Family Drama,  

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