Book Title: Triple Shot
Authors: Ross Klavan, Tim O’Mara, Charles Salzberg
Genres: Mystery, Crime Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
Date Read: 10/14/16
Pub Date: 08/15/16
Payback leads to an unmarked grave in Ross Klavan’s Thump Gun Hitched. A freak accident forces two L.A. cops to play out a deadly obsession that takes them from back alley payoffs to hard time in prison, then deep into the tunnel networks south of the border to a murderous town that’s only rumored to exist. Before the last shot is fired, everything they thought was certain proves to be a shadow and everything they trusted opens into a trap.
Life was so much simpler for Tim O’Mara’s marijuana-selling narrator in Smoked when all he had to worry about was keeping his customers, ex-wife, and daughter satisfied. When he forges a reluctant alliance with his ex-wife’s new lover, he realizes there’s lots of money to be made from the world’s number one smuggled legal product—cigarettes. Unfortunately, his latest shipment contained some illegal automatic weapons. Now he’s playing with the big boys and finds the price of the game way over his head. Murder was never part of his business model.
And finally in Twist of Fate, Charles Salzberg follows Trish Sullivan, an ambitious TV reporter working in a small, upstate New York market. She receives a note from Meg Montgomery, a beautiful young woman convicted of murdering her husband and two children. Montgomery claims she’s innocent and Sullivan, smelling a big story that may garner some national attention, investigates and turns up evidence that the woman has, indeed, been framed. What happens next changes the life of both women in unexpected ways.
What a fantastically unique idea; I loved how this book contained 3 separate novellas in one format. Talk about a bargain! All three of these short stories have their own thing going for them, but all contain that similar hard boiled detective/noir feel. I’ll try to give a tiny review of each story and then my thoughts on the book as a whole. I’ve not reviewed a collection of stories on my blog yet, so bare with me as I learn how to do it.
Thump Gun Hitched was novella #1 and a great story to kick off the book with. This particular snippet was the shortest and fastest read for me and I was amazed at the amount of twists Ross Klavan fit into such a tiny story. TGH stuck closest to a traditional police procedural, which you know is a major plus for me, so I was drawn in and read that particular section in one sitting. I think one of the major wins this has going for it is there is no time wasted trying to get pulled into the story, it just happens immediately and keeps you there until the end.
Smoked likely contained the highest quality of writing out of the 3; you can tell Tim O’Mara is a well seasoned writer who has loads of experience in the crime fiction genre. I believe this was the longest novella of the bunch at around 100 pages, but again, a very quick read. Out of the 3 stories, this one probably interested me the least, as the crime mob boss theme isn’t one I usually seek out, but he did a wonderful job with this story and made it interesting even for picky readers like me.
Twist of Fate was by far my favorite story of the bunch and the read I found the most interesting. This section by itself was a 5 star ride on my scale and I would love to read something of full length by Charles Salzberg. The plot was more on par with the type of mystery/suspense novels I read, so that’s probably why I connected with it the most. I was completely surprised by the ending and enjoyed this in every way possible.
Triple Shot is easily one of the most unique and dazzling reads I’ve had the privilege of experiencing this year. The cover is just as fascinating as it’s divided into 3 sections to pay homage to each of the stories included, and I really liked the designs and soft feel. This was an easy read that, if chosen to do so, can be read in mind with completing one story per night. I would highly recommend this to fans of crime fiction looking for a different layout and feel; this book kept things interesting and was a nice break from the traditional reading experience. If anyone else decides to read this one, please let me know so that I have someone to discuss with! 🙂
* Many thanks to Angelle Barbazon at JKS Lit Publicity for providing my copy; it was my pleasure to leave an honest review.