Sunday, October 1, 2017

Book Review: Upon My Soul by Robert J. Randisi

Robert Randisi delivers another winner with Upon My Soul, the first in the Hitman With a Soul trilogy.
I have interviewed Mr. Randisi on this website, and I encourage you to read the entry if you have not already. Having experienced his work before, and having interviewed him for this blog, I was not surprised to find this tale to be a lean, well-written thriller. The pacing is as good as always. The plot moves along, never bogged down by filler many authors feel the need to include to pad the word count.
The plot involves a hitman, Sangster (or as he is currently known as), who wakes up one day to find he has a soul. His spiritual awakening leaves him with the inability to take lives, so he quits his employment and tries to settle in for a life of peace. Of course, being a thriller, his past comes back to haunt him. I won’t spoil anything else for you. Just know there are fresh twists and turns in this highly original tale. While you may think the plot has been done before, just know that Randisi keeps it fresh, and the book is never stale.
I also enjoyed the many references to other crime authors and their works. You’ll find Donald Westlake (and his alias Richard Stark) and Elmore Leonard, among others. These Easter eggs add to the fun, making this a sort of meta hitman story.
It is also nice to root for the main character. Some hard-hitting crime stories have “heroes” devoid of any likable attributes. But I found myself liking Sangster as he tries his hardest to do the right thing.
The bottom line is Upon My Soul is an easily consumable novel that will leave you wanting more, even though this story works as a standalone. Thankfully, there are two more books in the series, both of which I will be reading. Highly recommended.

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