I downloaded this one by mistake, seeking Dana King’s Grind Joint, which my mentor and friend, Les Edgerton, had recommended. Grind Joint’s not available on Kindle, and I didn’t want to spring for the paperback price, so I went ahead with Worst Enemies. It’s a quick read with a lot of virtues. Among them a rather interesting plot which the principal villain derives from the Hitchcock movie Strangers on a Train. Our young chief detective is an interesting guy with a sympathetic heart and a military background who’s able to traverse diverse worlds from rich and white to black and poor, corrupt and straight. The setting is the small town in rust belt country outside Pittsburg, populated by interesting mix of folks.
I find fault with the ghetto dialect–King’s trying to hard to get it absolutely “right” instead of giving us a flavor and letting our imaginations take care of the rest. Errors and anomalies stick out horribly. Then there’s the chief criminal. Again, an interesting noir kind of guy. But we leave him less than halfway through the book. It’s as if he’s there as a catalyst, then gets tossed aside when there’s no more use for him.
So that’s my Worst Enemies. Worth the kindle price, though.