Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Beat The Reaper by Josh Bazell

Dr. Peter Brown has a huge problem. It's not bad enough that he gets mugged on the way to work. It's not bad enough that the hospital is controlled chaos with nurses never there and patients who can't go anywhere else for help. No, things are about to get much worse. A former Mafia hitman who has become a doctor in the witness protection program after testifying about his former bosses, Peter is recognized by a patient who knew him in his former life and plans to share that knowledge with the people Peter is being protected from.

Peter Brown is an unforgettable character. It's hard to imagine having sympathy for, and even liking, a Mafia hitman, but Josh Bazell succeeds in making the reader do both. Brown is a true original. The reader learns his motivation for becoming a hitman, some history of his crimes, how the Mob is organized and works and about the love of his life. By the middle of the book, the reader is on Brown's side, drawn into his world and compelled to read more to find out what happens.

I started this book not sure I'd like it. The language is rough and I couldn't imagine having any interest in the character. But it wasn't long before I couldn't wait to find out more. This book is highly recommended for suspense readers. It is a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writer's award winner, and quite deserving of the prize. I enjoyed it immensely.

1 comment:

Diane said...

I though this book was pretty cleaver too. The language was a bit over the top, but I still liked the story.