Another kidnapping story. Seems ordinary. But Westlake turns it into something more on the human side, with a big slice of humor as the tragedy unfolded. I found it a tad long; but maybe it had to be this long for it to work. The interaction between Koo and Mark is the main subject here, not the kidnapping. And the last pages, while everything is flying and falling apart, the slapstick they do is just side splitting. Westlake has achieved a tour de force. With nothing more than a dull kidnapping, he has put down some serious issues mixed with humor, terror, and human emotions. I wonder why (really) this book wasn’t published at the time. This is a Westlake that I didn't quite know. And I’ve read more than 50 of his book, if you include books written by Westlake’s nom de plume Richard Stark.
First novel I have read by the author. Found it to be a decent read. Would have been more timely if published back in the 70's when it was originally written, Some good character development if unfortunately from stock characters.
All the Hard Case Westlake titles bear a punch closer to his Richard Stark work than the comic capers for which he might be better known.
The violence described in this volume is terrifying even more so for the righteousness felt by those committing it.
And though I'm not shocked to see the phrase 'anal orgasm' used in a book, I'm still amazed that it popped up in a Westlake title.
This manuscript should have been left in a drawer.
To say this book is disappointing is an understatement.
Really good. Classic Westlake, glad they decided to publish it.
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