Jon's Reviews > Baby Shark

Baby Shark by Robert Fate
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Jun 25, 09

This is not a book I would ever have picked up on a whim. The title is hokey. So is the author's name. It's set in Texas. That's three strikes against it right there. I lived in Texas as a boy (in fact I was there in 1954, when this novel is set) and it's a place I've pretty much successfully avoided ever since. But solely because Nikki gave a later book in the series a rave review with 5 stars, I decided to give this first one a try. It's the goods. The most successful revenge fantasy I've read in years. The first person heroine, Kristin Van Dijk, witnesses the brutal murder of her father and then is immediately beaten, gang-raped, and left for dead in a burning building, all in the first few pages. She survives, recovers, is trained by former commandos, and becomes a pretty, young, good-hearted, well-read, clever, remorseless, killing machine. (I said it was a fantasy...)The rest of the book describes her terrible vengeance on the four bad guys from the opening pages. Half-way through the book she's already dispatched three of them, and then things start to pick up speed. The secondary characters are wonderful. The dialogue is spot-on. I laughed. I cried. I haven't had this kind of pleasure since Odysseus offed Penelope's suitors. Kristin joins the ranks of admirable, indestructible female killers like Thomas Perry's Jane Whitefield, or Robert Tanenbaum's Marlene Ciampi. I will definitely be reading more of these. Thanks, Nikki.
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Nikki Glad you liked it! I was in Texas in 1954 as well, starting school in El Paso.

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