Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Book Review: THE HANGING CLUB, by Tony Parsons

Tony Parsons
Minotaur Books, 2016
366 pages
Crime / Detective / Police

Well. I have gone and done it. I have read all three Max Wolfe novels in a little over a week. That in and of itself is not the bad thing. The worst part is I now will have to wait nearly a full year before the fourth is released. (And there had so better be a fourth)!

The Max Wolfe series has quickly become my favorite series out there. The writing surpasses any book written by any of the other writers I have been reading. (If that makes sense). And THE HANGING CLUB only further states my case for me.

Do you know why you've been brought to this place of execution?

Public executions begin showing up on YouTube. The world tunes in. Views sky rocket. Tracing the connection back to the criminal(s) is easier said than done. Thing is, maybe more than half the world is okay with the deaths. Applauds them. Supports the killers.

The targeted victims are criminals that the courts treated with kid gloves. Either they victims had received no, or little jail time for heinous crimes committed. The Hanging Club, dubbed by social media, is out righting wrongs; making things black and white. The question is perpetually asked, What would you do if your child was killed and the killer got off scott-free?

DC Max Wolfe has his work cut out for him. The public seems mostly against his investigation. He almost appears as the bad guy, the crook, against vigilantes trying to right all the wrongs the judicial system caused. As more victims are executed on live-stream, and as Max gets closer to the truth, his very life is at risk . . . The Hanging Club has a bone to pick with him for always fighting for the rights of the criminals, and not defending the victims!

Simply an explosive novel. The idea of a Hanging Club is horrific, but . . . do we, in today's society, see this kind of thing more and more? The courts failing to prosecute the criminals? The innocent made to feel more like criminals than victims? Where is the justice in the world? And then there is Max. He has a job to do. It is simple, and clear. Keep everyone safe.

As usual, there is far more than the one story line taking place. We get more of Max's five year old daughter Scout. We meet an old, old friend of Max's, a homeless man, Jackson Rose, who Max takes in, and helps out in his time of need. Additionally, we get some disturbing glimpses into the brutal attack of DCI Whitestone's son, Justin. And for all of these sub-plot story-lines, we get that deeper glimpse into who Max Wolfe is. It makes the novel more real, more authentic, more . . . alive.

Parson's amazes me. I cannot wait for the next novel. Can. Not. Wait. 

Phillip Tomasso
Author of the Severed Empire Series
and The Vaccination Trilogy

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