(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Edgar-finalist Bruen's excellent 10th Jack Taylor novel (after 2011's Headstone) finds the Irish PI looking upon the sights of Galway with now-sober if ever-wistful eyes-but a serial killer wants him to come out and play. Signing invitations to Jack as "C33," the mysterious figure inflicts vigilante justice on other murderers and scumbags. "A Dexter with an Irish lilt... C33 had honed the art of reprisal in the States, an equal killer land of opportunity." For once, with a possible new woman in his life, Jack isn't interested, and stays aloof from the crimes, much like a soul lost in purgatory. But when his former drug-dealer friend, Stewart, picks up the challenge, all hell breaks loose. Bruen maintains his trademark hip references and highly poetic style, but fans expecting the usual are in for some shock therapy, as he busts out one series-changing surprise after another. Agent: Lukas Ortiz, Philip G. Spitzer Literary Agency. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
*Starred Review* Unusually flush, sober, and settled into a new apartment stocked to the gills with books, Jack Taylor is no longer entertaining requests to hunt Galway's disappeared, identify the tormenters of its marginalized, or root out authoritarian abusers. But Jack's reputation as the man who'll deliver some manner of truth and justice stands, and he'll not walk away from Galway's darkness easily. C33, a vigilante killing criminals who have escaped legal justice through technicalities, seems to think Jack is a suitable playmate. Dropping Jack a note about the latest killing, C33 identifies the next mark and signs off with, Your turn. Despite the challenge, Jack hopes to avoid jumping back into the mix and sets his ally Stewart on C33's heels. In the meantime, Jack becomes entangled with Reardon, a crazy surfer mogul snatching up parts of Galway. Throughout, Jack's brutal inner voice shouts dire predictions as his attempts to avoid past mistakes lead to disasters for his friends and a hunt for the killer he's foolishly dismissed. Bruen's storytelling style, a stream-of-consciousness mix of prose and verse, strips away Galway's tourist-board facade and offers a darkly comic social commentary. Jack Taylor tales don't end well; that's just not the life our Jack's living. But Bruen always respects his characters, and they end right. Noir fans will find exactly what they love here. Note to RA librarians looking for links: The BBC series Jack, based on the Jack Taylor series, is now available in the U.S., and it's almost as good as the books.--Tran, Christine Copyright 2010 Booklist