Wednesday 2 May 2018

Book Review: Trio of Lost Souls by Jack Remick

Last Updated: 18 July 2021

Trio of Lost Souls by Jack Remick book cover

AD* | Bill Vincent is a killer but in the name of justice. Not that the law would see it that way. With one murderous act of retribution for terrible violence inflicted on his wife, he leaves behind a respectable calling as a prize-winning investigative journalist and hits the road. On the run, he ekes out a living in California's Central Valley as a box-maker, a turkey debeaker, a truck driver's assistant, and finally a field hand. In this last job, he meets Jim Garret, a like-minded spirit whose thirst for justice equals his own. They join together to beat the corrupt bossmen at their own political game.

Make no mistake, this is a novel of grand proportions and one which is fully prepared to sweep the unsuspecting reader firmly off their feet. Taking you on a swift journey across America, back-of-beyond towns, gritty crime and political statements are all ten-a-plenty in this book.

Trio of Lost Souls is a tale that, I feel, would be better suited to the big screen than the pages of a book. Of course, books are one of the best modes of storytelling that we have available to us, but this tale feels somewhat hampered by its ink and paper housing and instead, it aches to be played out scene by scene in front of an array of enthralled viewers.

Sweeping tales such as this one are always tricky to pull off; it is all too easy to end up losing the reader in amongst a cloud of confusion or technicalities about one thing or another. Indeed, with this being the fourth in a series (although I confess I didn't know it at the time) I was left incredibly confused about the events which must have happened in the first three books. Throughout the first half of the book, in particular, I was left scrambling to pick up the pieces and reacquaint myself with facts the author seemed to assume every reader would already know.

Feeling as though I was on the back foot from the very start, I struggled to really get into the story for a good chunk of the book - a shame as I feel I could have enjoyed the story under different circumstances.

Instead, I found it tricky to get to know the characters and understand them and the motives for their actions. Why did a certain character behave in a particular way? I had no idea; guesswork was my sole reference point for much of the story. 

Similarly, not being a US citizen, I only have a very rudimentary grasp of the American political landscape - a fact which definitely did not help me to progress my understanding of much of the later parts of the story. 

However, one thing I did think was particularly well done was the short introductions to many of the later chapters. Almost mini-narratives in their own right, these little snippets provided fascinating snapshots into the culture and mindset of the town and its people, something which really added that all-important extra dimension to my perception of the story.

Rating: 2 stars

Trio of Lost Souls is available to buy now.

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* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

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