Friday, November 11, 2011

Thorns on Roses-Tandy Rawls

Thorns on Roses

Tandy Rawls

L & L Dreamspell, Jul 27 2011, $14.95

ISBN: 9781603183758

In Broward County, Florida Police Detective Richards shows the corpse of an unidentified teenager to former Special Forces and ex Dallas cop Tom Jeffries, as the victim was carrying his private investigator business card. He insists he does not know her, but after leaving the morgue he calls his best friend Charlie Rogers informing him he just found his stepdaughter, Mary Lou Smithson.

The Thorns on Roses gang raped the seventeen years old girl before dumping her dead in an abandoned vehicle. Jeffries vows to avenge her death. Using the Rose Tattoo that he saw on May Lou’s corpse as the identification key, Jeffries hunts down the gangbangers one at a time; while Richards follows the bloody trail in which he believes the wise ass P.I. is an avenging angel of death. The law firm of Bernstein, Goldsmith, Espinosa and Bernstein that employs Jeffries fears his vendetta could harm the company so they assign associate Abbey Archer to keep him out of trouble. Ergo he makes one critical error when his attraction to Abbey provides his enemies with his Achilles Heel.

This is an exciting South Florida noir starring a kick butt hero on a mission in which he “unites” the gang and the cops in an effort to end his serial killing spree. The romance may appear at first as standard shtick, but Randy Rawls uses several great spins (especially a late one) to make the relationship relevant to the action-packed story line. With a nod to a composite of Charles Bronson characters from Death Wish and Mr. Majestyk, etc. fans will root for Jeffries as he kicks butt in this superb over the top of Coconut Grove thriller.

Harriet Klausner

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