Ensiform's Reviews > Hit List

Hit List by Lawrence Block
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Jul 12, 2012

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bookshelves: fiction
Read in January, 2010

Desultory assassin Keller is at it again, crossing the country and murdering people who don’t seem very much to deserve it. The trouble is, this time it looks as if someone is gunning for him as well. This was a fun read; it’s clear by now that Block is uninterested in writing anything gritty unless it revolves around a man named Scudder.

Keller and his boss Dot trade snappy repartee reminiscent of ‘40s movies – Dot is the archetype of the fast-talking, sarcastic fiery females of that era. The violence is handled delicately, off-screen, and it’s a testament to Block’s skill that Keller remains a sympathetic character despite his many murders. The book is marred by a couple of flaws, including Keller’s maddeningly slow response in connecting the dots, a couple of truly ridiculous coincidences that do nothing to further the plot, and a rather too detailed digression as Keller serves on jury duty. Still, the wit and the dark humor carried me along, even if a rather obvious pattern is emerging: everyone Keller gets close to dies.
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