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The Killer
By Jack Elgos
2012
Reviewed by Angie Mangino
Rating: 4 stars
 
 
The very first chapter set in England in 1985 whets the reader’s appetite to want to know more about Liam O’Neil.
 
Chapter two then brings readers to the beginning in Northern Ireland in 1978, meeting Darren McCann, caught in the violence in Belfast, but refusing recruitment into the IRA.
 
“‘Darren, my son, as long as I draw breath, promise me you’ll not get involved in the troubles.’  His mother’s constant words echoed through his mind at every attempted recruitment.”
 
For each chapter after, the action continues to build as readers follow McCann into escalating violence, until the conclusion, which rather than resolving the story, introduces new questions for the reader.  The sequel, The Killer II, promises to answer what happens next.
 
The well-done characterization, dialogue, and action in The Killer keep the reader engaged.  What this reviewer wanted, however, was a somewhat more concrete conclusion of this book on its own merit as a stand-alone book, albeit part of a trilogy, not an ending stating it is only the beginning.
 
Aside from this one perceived flaw, the author offers a well-conceived story line for readers who are content to wait for subsequent books to get the whole story.