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Monday, January 16, 2017

Bronx Requiem by John Clarkson

Bronx Requiem by John Clarkson is a hard hitting violent story of ex-cons teaming with their parole officer to clean up a crime infested neighborhood in the Bronx and beyond. James Beck, is an exonerated cop killer, who gathers together other reformed cons to work behind the scenes to discover the killer of another recently released ex-con, Packy Johnson, who had saved Beck’s life in prison. Packy isn’t out seventeen hours after a seventeen year term when he is killed. Packy had learned his daughter was whoring and wanted to stop it. This is where Beck starts his crusade to solve this murder marching through a tangle of corrupt prison guards and a rising star young cop in the Bronx who figures he is righteous, when in fact he ain’t. The irony in this action packed novel is that the cons are doing it legally while the law enforcement officers are not and they get their comeuppance in very appropriate, creative, and fantastical ways. Beck is a genius in setting the record straight, bringing justice to the right people, and providing perfect endings to otherwise potentially sad outcomes. He does get one thing wrong about Packy’s murder in the ultimate twist to this thoroughly enjoyable novel. The ultimate lesson to this Bronx tale comes through Packy’s daughter.

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