"Brewer's writing is gritty and witty, tough on its characters but easy on the reader."-The Albuquerque Tribune
"Brewer's . . . pacing is among the best in the genre."-Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
An amateur crime spree takes a turn in the piney woods of far northern California in Bank Job, the latest fast-paced escapade from author Steve Brewer.
Jaded, rage-laden, and utterly stupid, brothers Leon and Junior Daggett and their homicidal partner, Roy Wade, entertain themselves by knocking over liquor stores and gas stations. When a run-of-the-mill robbery goes sour, they find themselves bloody and knocking on the door of a stranger for help. That stranger ends up being Vince Carson, retired bank robber.
Thinking they've discovered their big-time score, Leon and Roy take Vince's wife hostage, forcing him to rob the local bank in exchange for Maria's safe return. But Vince has other ideas. He sets out to prove that old age and treachery always triumph over youth and ineptitude.
Bank Job plays out like a movie-The Desperate Hours meets Raising Arizona. It's just the sort of hilarious mix readers expect from Brewer, author of the recent novels Boost and Bullets.
Steve Brewer is fast turning into one of my favourite authors. Bank Job is the third book I've read from him, after a couple of pseudonymous reads - Duke City Split and Duke City Hit - both released under the moniker Max Austin.
We have a trio of hapless criminals on a road trip taking down Mom and Pop outfits for a few hundred bucks. Junior is the virgin in the crew and when he's sent into a liquor shop with an unloaded gun to score a few greenbacks, he's sent packing by the two feisty sisters who run the store.
Seeking medical help for Junior and anxious to get off the country road, the gang rock up at the house of Vince Carson and his wife Maria. Vince is an ex-con and reformed bank robber, his wife a retired prison guard. An older couple who met in difficult circumstances, but they ain't going to be an easy pushover for the three amigos.
Vince is forced out of retirement for one last bank job with testosterone fuelled Roy Wade and the slightly more capable brother Leon, while Junior tries to babysit Maria. Chuck into the mix an ambitious and never off duty Sheriff's deputy Debra Kemp, whose sniffing around and it's not just the three amigos whose liberty is at stake, Vince and Maria have a lot to lose also.
Fantastic action scenes, plenty of gun-play, fisticuffs and swinging skillets, plenty of banter, sassy dialogue and humor and a story which never stands still. Lots to like for me with this caper.
Best book read in July – 4.5 stars from 5
Steve Brewer has his website here.
He's on Twitter - @BrewerRules
If time was infinite and my pockets bottomless, I'd quite happily read his 20 plus other novels, but I guess I'll cherry pick the odd one or two, when my reading needs a fast-paced boost in the future!
Read in July, 2016 - bought copy for Kindle.