Thursday, March 1, 2012

Felony Fists - Jack Tunney

Now then, where was I...

Oh yeah. It was freakingly cold. When you wake up and your phone says '-22 or maybe colder, not sure, I may have broken' and there are two dogs - who can feel the frostiness emanating from the iced up window - and they look at you with eyes that say, 'You know what? We really don't need to go to the bathroom today. Or anytime until Spring, thanks.' Then you know it's just too damn cold.

But that was last month. Today, Spring is in the air, the ice has melted away, mostly, the sun is out, and busy, busy, busy times are gone. And I did manage to squeeze in some reading.

Felony Fists (Fight Card) - Jack Tunney

"Carter dropped. Done. Finished. If he ever got in the ring again, he'd end up the same way. I saw the fear in him and knew I'd broken him for boxing.
I pulled away from Pops, spitting out my mouthpiece. I walked over to the ropes and looked down at Cohen. I spat a gob of blood on the canvas in contempt."

Any crime fiction reader is familiar with the landscape of Felony Fists. It's 1950s LA, Mickey Cohen is kingpin. A suit and a hat tells people a lot about who you are, and a dress can tell even more. Half the cops in the city are on Cohen's payroll, and most of the rest are just happy to stay out his way and keep their nice homes and families safe.

But Patrick 'Felony' Flynn is different. He wants to be a detective, he wants his shot at Cohen, and he ain't scared of the consequences. He's never walked away from a fight - inside the ring or out - in his life, and he's not about to start now. He gets his chance when the police chief sees a way to use Flynn's boxing skills to score a point against Cohen - but that means stepping into the ring against Cohen's heavyweight contender.

Felony Fists is a real nice, easy-reading little book. It's lean, bloody, but doesn't over reach itself - this is a small story against a much larger backdrop, leaving plenty of scope for further titles. In fact this is #2 of three so far under the the Fight Card name and by composite pseudonym Jack Tunney. Deception, corruption and plenty of action are packed in, but it's nice to see that Tunney doesn't take the easy way of action for the sake of it, or substituting violence and blood for story. Instead he (they) have crafted a page-turner that spends plenty of time developing the characters, plot, motives, and the all important 50s LA backdrop.

As a novella, it's the perfect length for its scope, and a good example of why this format is coming back into fashion with e-reading. Recommended.

1 comment:

  1. I like the quote you put. Those are the words of a guy who fought in a ring before.