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> Review - Hitting Back by John Walker
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Jan 23, 2012 12:33PM
Hitting Back is the third book of The Dark Retribution Quartet. As in Book 1, Wrath and Remembrance, and Book 2, Comparing Scars, the title gives the reader a large clue as to one of the principal themes of the book, in this case getting even no matter what. Once again we are treated, through vivid description and authentic dialogue, to a rich and nuanced portrait of working class Newcastle upon Tyne in Northwest England. Although I’ve traveled rather extensively in the United Kingdom and been near Newcastle, I’ve never actually been to the city. Nevertheless, so good is the writing that, having read the three books, I feel like I know the city and its environs well. Like the protagonists of Books 1 and 2, Jack Parrish and Jake Callan (who make cameo but important appearances in Hitting Back) protagonist Lenny Durning is a rich, complex and interesting character. Unlike Parrish and Callan, Lenny is a vicious and thoroughly despicable criminal. Like Books 1 and 2, but more overtly, the story of Book 3 is about the fight between the forces of good and evil: this time for the soul of Lenny. This reader flinched at Lenny’s actions but had to keep turning the pages. The end of the book was reward enough and set me up for the climax of Book 4, a read to which I look forward.
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