Thursday, November 26, 2009

Book Review: First Rule

Title The First Rule (Joe Pike)
Author Robert Crais
Rating ***1/2
Tags joe pike, elvis cole, private eyes, mercenaries, series, mystery, thriller 

Robert Crais's main mystery series is about Elvis Cole, a private eye in Los Angeles. Cole's partner in his investigative agency is former mercenary and former cop Joe Pike. Crais has now written some novels in which Pike is the main character and Elvis the sidekick, and this is one of them.

Frank Murphy, his wife, and two sons, aged 10 and 6, were all murdered in a home invasion that seems to be part of a series of home invasions in which eleven people total have been killed. Frank had been a mercenary under Joe Pike's command, but left when his wife insisted he give up that life. He became an importer of clothing and by all accounts, happy and content in his new life.

Joe feels bound to investigate, and to would prefer to find the killers before the police do, as his punishment would be more final. The Murphy's nanny was also killed, and she seems to be the key as to why the Murphys were attacked.

Joe Pike is an interesting character. The phrase "I don't like violence but I'm very good at it" might have been invented for him. Actually, he doesn't seem to like or dislike violence. It is a tool he uses when's just needed a lot. Pike is an honorable character.who deals with a lot of people who are not.

I'm ambivalent about characters like Pike. I don't like the level of violence.... but if I were in trouble, I would certainly like to have somebody like Pike looking out for me.

Overall, I liked this book a little less than others by Crais. It seemed a bit formulaic. However, Crais is the kind of writer I'd rather read at his worst than most other authors' best.

Disclaimer: I participate in the Amazon Vine program and received this book free in return for reviewing it.

Publication Putnam Adult (2010), Hardcover, 320 pages
Publication date 2010
ISBN 0399156135 / 9780399156137

Posted via web from reannon's posterous

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