Today I am reviewing Penance by James M. Clifton PhD.
Blurb: Carlos Ramirez is an Ivy League educated lawyer and the son of an infamous drug lord. He spent most of his life sheltered from the seedier side of his father’s business dealings, devoting his time to running his family’s legal business ventures. All that changes, however, when his father is murdered by his partner, the head of the northeast Irish mob. Consumed by hatred, he and his sister Lena exact their revenge.
Seemingly oblivious to the collateral damage he is causing, Carlos’s actions result in the death of a number of innocent people. The deepest of regret follows. Given the perspective of time, he comes to grieve his actions, leading him to the brink of suicide.
Carlos’s sister, Lena, is a very different person. While Carlos avoids his father’s legacy, Lena embraces it, maturing to become a major crime boss. As the story unfolds, Carlos devises a desperate plan to soothe his stricken conscience. What Carlos does not realize, though, is that Lena and her professional killer are watching over him, protecting him from danger.
At various points during the story, you might find yourself cheering for the killer, empathizing with the drug lord, or lamenting the weaknesses and flaws of the one character that is risking his life and sacrificing everything to do the right thing. Carlos, Lena and her hired assassin are complex characters caught up in a complex story, not unlike real life. And, as in reality, at any given instant in time, it is difficult to tell the good people from the bad.
My Review: This was a interesting crime novel. It was fast paced and very detailed. You actually find yourself cheering for the main crime boss as he sets about reliving his guilt. I loved the twists and turns. My favorite character believe it or not was his sister even though she was capable of great violence. It did some editing issues which takes it down a notch but I would recommend it to anyone who like the crime suspense genre. I thought it ended a little abruptly. I’m not sure if there will be a sequel but thought this one could have wrapped up better. I give this 4 stars.