The thief’s theme is rife in this cross continent noir by Aussie crime writer Andrew Nette.
Gary Chance makes his hard earned cash from stealing others hard earned cash. He’s a professional in a profession where the big ‘pay-off’ is the pinnacle but prison is a more probable outcome – if not death. His latest job takes him to the Gold Coast but all is not glitter, gold and sunny beaches. The planning is precise, the target a foreigner with a penchant for poker games and an accumulator of cash. Gary’s newly assembled team (consisting of less than reputable and trustworthy characters) looks set to score but things soon change when bundles of drugs are discovered midway through executing the plan. Unbeknownst to Gary, this had been planned from day one – only no one told him. With the stakes raised, bullets puncture the thinly veiled fabric of Gary’s reality and he’s soon on the run with an unlikely traveling companion from both killers and the law.
Make no mistake, Gary isn’t just a thief, he’s a harden criminal with contacts, motivation, and a knack for getting into and out of trouble. The Parker influence abounds with Gary a well-defined Australian counterpart to Richard Stark’s popular character. Gary is street smart who plays the hardman as easily as he plays the lover. His easy acquiescence to violence akin to Parker at his most dangerous.
GUNSHINE STATE’s distinct stanzas read as bite sized chunks of episodic noir, each comprising a full complement of crime, characterisation, and sub plot which bind together to form part of a broader narrative. While helping to keep the story fresh, these distinct elements enhance the reader experience by flipping the script from a locale perspective and changing up criminalities.
I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend readers of Richard Stark’s Parker series check it out.
I was given a copy by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.