The Reapers by John Connolly
== Plot synopsis ==
This is the seventh book in the Charlie Parker series. He is a former private detective who in past novels has helped to solve cases which tend to have some supernatural element to them. He lost his wife and young child to a serial killer in the first novel in this series.
This particular novel does not really focus on Parker, but two of his sidekicks, Angel and Louis who appear in most of his novels.
They are both elite assassins though what sets them apart is the fact that they will only kill people who they feel deserve to die.
However, instead of being the hunters, they end up being hunted by another elite killer known as Bliss who has very personal reasons for wanting them dead . . .
== My thoughts ==
Most of the novels in this series have a supernatural element to them. This one does have some slight inkling of this but it felt more like a standard thriller novel to me. I would normally enjoy these types of novels but I couldn't get into this.
I read this before I had read most of the earlier books in this series which may have been one reason. I found it difficult to empathise with the two main characters Angel and Louis. They are both gay lovers. I think this makes for some unique characters but it did take some getting used to. They are not the stereotypical heroes that you get in most thriller type novels.
In addition, I didn't like the supernatural type elements the author tries to hammer into certain parts of the story. He uses imagery to describe characters in certain parts so you feel a character may be truly evil or other worldly.
At the time, I didn't appreciate it, but now, the things I say I liked about it were getting to learn about Louis and his early life and how he was recruited by the government into a secret killing squad. I liked reading the sections of the novel where we see Louis in his younger life than I did reading about the present, and the chase of hunter and prey, as Louis and Angel try to outwit and kill their enemy before he gets them.
I also liked the ingenious set-pieces in the story and the action where Angel and Louis kill their targets. They are well detailed and expertly crafted.
== Audio and availability ==
This audio book is read by Jeff Harding and is 12 hours and 10 mins in length. As stated in earlier reviews, I am not a big fan of this narrator's voice.
The audio CD of this is available from the Isis Publishing web site (www.isis-publishing.co.uk), for £30.49. You can also try looking in your local library.
== Summary and recommendation ==
I would give this 2 stars. It is better than a lot of novels I have read. Certain sections of the novel drew my attention such as learning about Louis's early life and when Louis and Angel prepare and then liquidate one of their targets. Yet, I felt the overall plot ark to do with revenge was too formulaic, and this couldn't really be hidden by the use of unique characters. I feel the pace of the novel lagged in places and I didn't think the author manages to create an exciting action thriller to keep you listening non-stop.