Thursday, March 3, 2011

Dangerous Times

Throughout the plots of novels, movies, television shows and even plays, the underlying theme is often either revenge or an attempt to move oneself forward in a manner that requires cheating and or killing others. In his first crime novel, Dangerous Times, new author Phillip Frey uses both and uses them well.

Frank Moore is an underworld figure who has a penchant for murdering women and children. None of his killings have been for monetary gain or revenge; Frank Moore simply enjoys killing innocents who, for whatever reason, appeal to his lack of morals. He is also a bag man for a powerful Asian crime boss. Now he's become tired of carrying someone else's money and has decided to steal it, making his getaway by locating the perfect patsy in the form of one John Kirk, a near-enough look-a-like that once he has killed Kirk, Moore can stage the death so those who come looking for the millions of dollars he has stolen from his employer will believe the body to be that of the former bag man.

Moore, however, is unprepared for the twists and turns of fate that are present in the life of this former Marine, now a troubled San Pedro, California auto mechanic. Twists and turns that will throw Moore's carefully crafted plan into upheaval, threatening to undo everything he and his lovely wife, his Asian employer's niece, who wants her uncle's money as partial payment for murdering her parents years back, have carefully conceived.

In this debut novel for Phillip Frey, a story that is not without a few minor annoyances that reveal the author's lack of credentials, you might find the beginning of the story a little rough, but Frey quickly finds his groove and the majority of the story unveils itself as a compelling plot that grips hold of your imagination and urges you to keep reading until the last page is reached.

This story indeed has its intermittent errors in grammar that need to be cleaned up, but none of them are enough to detract from a story that is as imaginative as it is fulfilling.

Phillip Frey proves with Dangerous Times that he can deliver a tightly written page-turner that will leave you waiting for the sequel. Indeed, the way in which this author completes this novel promises that there will be a second story to follow up on the characters Frey has created. I hope he doesn't wait too long on writing it.

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From Jacob M. Drake

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From Jackson Williams

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